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The only thing that makes "Now That's What I Call Christmas! 2" is the original collection, which was able to include the absolute classic Holiday songs of all time, such as Bing Crosby's "White Christmas." The first CD in that 2-CD set is far and away the ultimate Christmas hits disc; I have seen nothing that compares with the sheer number of classic songs on that one CD. However, compared to the other disc in that set or most other Holiday collections, these 36 songs more than hold their own, especially compared to all the other lesser collections that pop up this time of year.
We can begin with the songs that probably should have been included in the original: Elton John's "Step Into Christmas," Louis Armstrong's "Winter Wonderland," Peggy Lee's "Happy Holiday," Jose Feliciano's "Feliz Navidad," and Guy Lombardo's "Auld Lang Syne." Between this pair of 2-CD sets the only obvious song that is missing is "The Chipmunk Song," because all of the standards are here. The mix is a bit more towards contemporary artists from Destiny's Child and NSYYNC to Celine Dion and Norah Jones, this time around, which is where time has yet to tell on what will become perennial favorties. But you have to tip your stocking cap to any album that sandwiches Luciano Pavarotti belting out "Adeste Fideles" in between Andy Griffith and Barry Manilow.
This second collection also offers up more original songs that traditional numbers. You still get the latter--Charlotte Church singing "Silent Night," Andy Williams crooning "The First Noel," and Johnny Mathis doing "Silver Bells"--but there are lot more new holiday songs: Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas is You," the Waitresses' "Christmas Wrapping," and Norah Jones' "Peace." There is some repetition of songs and artists between the two collections, but that is not really a problem when you have 72 songs like this. I am not sure what you would pick for a fifth disc once you fill up fourth-fifths of your multi-CD player with these two sets, but you should have no problem adding a fifth favorite to the mix.