Saturday, October 13, 2012

Blake's Cheers (Music Review: Blake Shelton, Cheer's It's Christmas)

Here we go, the first Christmas album of the season. Ive had this album for a week or so now, and just spinned it this morning, as it seemed more oddly appropriate, as the morning chill has finally set in. I don't know much about Blake Shelton's music, besides the fact that he sings country music. I know him more from his judging/mentoring stint in "The Voice,' on NBC. I was kind of skeptical about him because he has made homophobic comments in the past, but it's Christmas so I will forgive.  Mr. Shelton has an appealing twangy baritone that's very accessible, and quite appealing. On standard fares like "White Christmas," and the likes, he sounds bland, like he was being forced to sing these songs. He perks up when he is on more comfortable grounds, like in a honky-tonk arranged "Blue Christmas," or when he is singing "Oklahoma Christmas" with Reba McIntyre. He seems to be pulling all the stops here, with regards to duets. He does one with Kelly Clarkson,  titled "There's A New Kid In Town," a religious carol that surprisingly is my favorite track in the album. He also has great chemistry with Michael Buble on a Holiday-lyric version of the latter's "Home." I was wondering why he would open his album with a duet until I realized it's one with his wife, Miranda Lambert - a cute touch, sort of like them welcoming you to their home. It's a a very pleasant album. While it won't be the first one I will pull off the shelf on Christmas morning, I won't cringe if someone puts it on.

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