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Christmas Songs

4 customer reviews

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Amazon's Jars Of Clay Store

Music

Image of album by Jars Of Clay

Photos

Image of Jars Of Clay

Biography

“Ar scath a cheile a mhaireas na daoine.”
An old Irish proverb, as translated:
“It is in the shelter of each other that the people live.”

It is among our most basic of needs.

And like the other simple building blocks of life – air, food, water – it can take on many forms.
It can be physical or spiritual, close-in or far-flung, untested ... Read more in Amazon's Jars Of Clay Store

Visit Amazon's Jars Of Clay Store
for 24 albums, 3 photos, discussions, and more.

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Product details

  • Audio CD (8 Dec. 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Nettwerk Productions Uk Ltd
  • ASIN: B000VRXNT2
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 187,840 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. The Gift Of St. Cecilia
2. Wonderful Christmastime
3. Love Came Down At Christmas
4. O, Little Town Of Bethlehem
5. Hibernation Day
6. Winter Skin
7. Peace Is Here
8. God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen
9. Evergreen
10. Christmastime Is Here
11. Drummer Boy
12. Gabriel's Message
13. In the Bleak Midwinter
14. I Heard the Bells On Christmas Day

Product Description

I will ship by EMS or SAL items in stock in Japan. It is approximately 7-14days on delivery date. You wholeheartedly support customers as satisfactory. Thank you for you seeing it.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mark Baker - Carstairs Considers TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 19 Oct. 2007
Format: Audio CD
Jars of Clay has finally released a Christmas CD! Fans (or this one at least) have long awaited one. While it isn't the instant Christmas project I love, there is lots of great stuff here.

The disc features lots of rare and original songs. For example, the group wrote two instrumental songs, "The Gift of St. Cecilia" and "Evergreen." There are also three original songs. While "Winter Skin" and "Hibernation Day" celebrate winter and the fun it can bring, "Peace is Here" celebrates the peace that Jesus can bring.

In my Christmas music collection, I had no copies of Paul McCartney's "Wonderful Christmastime." I can't compare it to anything else, but I like their alt rock take on it. I was also unfamiliar with "Love Came Down at Christmas" which is based on a Christina Rossetti poem. I really like it. I especially enjoy the reference to a kids folk song at the end.

Then there are the classics. "O Little Town of Bethlehem" gets a makeover with a new melody. It makes the song very haunting. "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" is likewise slow and haunting. And yes, they include "Drummer Boy." This is a different version then their single released years ago, but it does sound very similar. "Christmastime is Here" is part jazz and part rock. It sort of works, but I still prefer the original.

And that's the only real problem with the disc. Some artists can pull off a mix of their signature sound on a Christmas release. Jars of Clay comes close, but they don't quite do it. The CD is fine, but I think it will be several years before I consider it a true Christmas project. I will definitely pull it out in mid-December when I am ready for something different. But it won't be the first thing I get out the day after Thanksgiving.

Don't misunderstand. This isn't a bad release. It is quite enjoyable for something different. And it will please Jars of Clay's many fans.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mr J A SMITH on 27 Jan. 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I love Jars of Clay as a band and I love Christmas sound so when I discovered this Cd I thought 'this is for me!'
But it was not quite what I was expecting. The songs are very melancholy and downbeat and not what I associate with Christmas at all. I would say this is an Alternative Christmas album. Good but not amazing.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Love it. Different. If you're bored of the same old same old, give this a try. Very mellow and chilled.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Diddily on 23 Aug. 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
good for kids parties
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 48 reviews
24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
Christmas Songs Redeems 16 Oct. 2007
By Derek M. Foster - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Anytime I hear of an artist recording a Christmas album, I become slightly nauseous. How many renditions of "Winter Wonderland" can one generation drivel out?

I was, to say the least, apprehensive when I heard that Jars of Clay would be making a Christmas album. When the album became available, I listened with hesitation. What I found was pleasantly original and surprising. In a culture saturated on the bubble-gum Christmas-spirit, "Christmas Songs" restores a sense of mystery and depth that has been lost. What is most refreshing is the effectively balanced range of territory that is covered on the album. It is serious without being grave; it is fun without being flippant; it is experimental without being disoriented; and it is traditional without feeling stringent.

One of the most surprising gems on the album is the completely reconstructed carol, "O Little Town of Bethlehem." The melodies are hauntingly beautiful and permeate the song with an ethereal quality that brings out an appropriate sense of wonder incubated in the idea of the Incarnation.

The album harks back to the 50s with "Hibernation Day", a fun original contribution by Jars about being snowed in with the one you love and is tinged with just the right amount of nostalgia to make even the most calloused of lovers feel at least a little sappy and long for a time out of mind.

Other highlights include a rendition of Paul McCartney's "Wonderful Christmastime", "Love Came Down At Christmas", and the two instrumental pieces "Winter Skin" and "Evergreen" which bring a mood of enchantment to the album.

Drawbacks to the album are that it can be somewhat too meditative in areas. The second half of the album is much slower-paced and while that works well for the most part, it can start to feel monotonous at times. And although a great Christmas record, it feels somewhat out of place to think of it playing in the background on Christmas Day. But this is probably true for any Christmas album put out by a recording artist. Part of what makes any song about Christmas feel timeless and universal is, to me, a sense of anonymity as to who is singing the tune. But this criticism may be too personal. The overall drawbacks are minimal and significantly outweighed by the diversity and creativity of the rest of the album. All in all, Jars have succeeded in creating an excellent traditional, and yet modern Christmas album. You will definitely get your money's worth.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Rocky and Contemplative Christmas 19 Oct. 2007
By Mark Baker - Carstairs Considers - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Jars of Clay has finally released a Christmas CD! Fans (or this one at least) have long awaited one. While it isn't the instant Christmas project I love, there is lots of great stuff here.

The disc features lots of rare and original songs. For example, the group wrote two instrumental songs, "The Gift of St. Cecilia" and "Evergreen." There are also three original songs. While "Winter Skin" and "Hibernation Day" celebrate winter and the fun it can bring, "Peace is Here" celebrates the peace that Jesus can bring.

In my Christmas music collection, I had no copies of Paul McCartney's "Wonderful Christmastime." I can't compare it to anything else, but I like their alt rock take on it. I was also unfamiliar with "Love Came Down at Christmas" which is based on a Christina Rossetti poem. I really like it. I especially enjoy the reference to a kids folk song at the end.

Then there are the classics. "O Little Town of Bethlehem" gets a makeover with a new melody. It makes the song very haunting. "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" is likewise slow and haunting. And yes, they include "Drummer Boy." This is a different version then their single released years ago, but it does sound very similar. "Christmastime is Here" is part jazz and part rock. It sort of works, but I still prefer the original.

And that's the only real problem with the disc. Some artists can pull off a mix of their signature sound on a Christmas release. Jars of Clay comes close, but they don't quite do it. The CD is fine, but I think it will be several years before I consider it a true Christmas project. I will definitely pull it out in mid-December when I am ready for something different. But it won't be the first thing I get out the day after Thanksgiving.

Don't misunderstand. This isn't a bad release. It is quite enjoyable for something different. And it will please Jars of Clay's many fans.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
A Unique Take on Christmas Favorites 28 Nov. 2007
By Nanook - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Last week, I would've given this album three stars. After listening to it off and on, I'm up to a four stars. By Christmas I might be at five. Why?

All the songs on the album have a unique feel - not the typical Christmasy feel. They have Jars of Clay's signature sound which isn't distracting. It's just that at times you don't feel like you're listening to Christmas music. Check out some of the song samples. After listening to it for a week however, I've come to appreciate this different take on songs you've had beat into your head by everyone from Bing Crosby to Seals and Croft. Christmas should be a time of contemplating God's gift to us of his son. By spinning the songs a little off center, Jars of Clay has forced me to do that. I focus more on these songs and their lyrics than I have on others. And by doing so, I've found myself reflecting on the upcoming Christmas season.

Maybe I'll move to five stars by tomorrow.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Always Pleasantly Surpised, Never Disappointed 18 Oct. 2007
By Caleb Bissett - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I must in all honesty echo for the most part the review of Derek M. Foster. Given that I totally agree with the balance it has and even some of the criticisms, I have only a couple thoughts to add for discussion sake and also so that the good reviews are reinforced.

Last year my wife and I bought Sarah McLachlan's album "Wintersong", and found it to definitely be our favorite Christmas album; however, our only criticism was that at times it seems to be on the more depressing side of music, where Christmas songs should be joyful! But even in that she seems to capture the meditative importance of Christmas (God will use whom He will). But I echo the sentiments of others that Christmas songs should be joyful in that Christ was born! There are few things to celebrate as much as that (and they all have to do with Him, of course).

In the case of this Jars of Clay album, there is a real joy in Christmas music without succumbing to a real, for lack of a better term, cheesiness or fluffiness that accompanies almost every modern day Christmas album. Although it is true that the back half of the album is at times too slow, I never got the sense that the joy was lost, and like all Jars albums, it is always very deep, even when they are having fun.

Having said that, I can also understand the desire to have Christmas albums sung with a certain anonymity, and for the most part I too enjoy that aspect of it; but I have come to realize over the years that Jars write with a signature that is fundamental to who they are, and it is difficult to imagine them otherwise. And besides, who doesn't enjoy hearing a classic with a distinguishable voice like Bing Crosby. In the future, we or our children may enjoy the incredible voice of Dan Haseltine and the style of Jars of Clay. But again, I appreciate that review. It was spot on.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
A classic Christmas album with a twist 24 Oct. 2007
By tomcat_nash - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Jars of Clay's "Christmas Songs" is a unique Christmas album. I agree with what has been said for the most part. JOC does essentially what they did with their hymns album in that they take some poplar songs and obscure songs and then they also throw in some originals. They capture the spirit of the season on these songs but put their own stamp on it. As far as the sound of this album it feels like a continuation of their "Good Monsters" album. They also mix in some electonic influences in on songs like "O Little Town of Bethlehem" and "Drummer Boy." As mentioned they throw in a couple of instrumentals as well that are a nice touch and add to the album. Overall I think this is a good album and will be enjoyed by those who either like JOC or just like good christmas music.
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