Monday, November 19, 2012

Christmas Chills, They're Multiplying (Music Review: John Travolta & Olivia Newton John: This Christmas)

You wanna feel old? Do you know it has been thirty years since the movie version of GREASE? Yet the piece still resonates. Heck, the kids from GLEE just did their own version of it. I grew up singing the songs from the movie, and of course with John & Olivia so I was super excited to find out that they have done a Christmas album. Benefitting their respective charities, this album, I thought, has to either be so good, or so bad that it would be destined to be a camp classic. I mean, look at the album cover on the left - it's the gayest thing since Liberace's piano. And with guest stars to boot - Barbra Streisand for cryin' out loud. and you know what? It's a fine Christmas album. I was expecting camp, but this is a very listenable and tuneful Holiday album. I don't particularly think their voices blend well together, but the sum of them amount to something fun. The song selection is great, if a bit familiar - there's a touching "Silent Night" from both of them, and you can't doubt their chemistry, especially in "Baby It's Cold Outside." It was kind of weird to have Barbra chime in during "I'll Be Home For Christmas" but I will take Streisand anyway I can. Even Tony Bennett shows up in "Winter Wonderland," and he brings a lot of fun with him. The album sounds like a star studded Christmas party. Imagine both John and Olivia hosting a party, and then singing along with their guests. It's fun, it's Christmassy - what's not to like?

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