Written by Jennifer Manjarez
Monday, 02 February 2009
The most jaw-dropping track on the album is without a doubt Los Lonely Boys’ version of “Carol of the Bells.” The group takes one of the most dramatic Christmas songs known and somehow makes them appear even more entertaining and somehow a little sexy—the latter an aspect one would not necessarily want in a Christmas song, but somehow they pull it off. The track boasts Santana-like guitar work that showcases the band’s talent unlike anything else I’ve heard from them. It’s a shame, since the album is a Christmas album, meaning many people who aren’t already LLB fans will miss out on the impeccable display of talent that was put into this album, and especially this song. It’s obvious the band wasn’t looking to make another simple and boring Christmas CD. What could have easily become just another collection of traditional Christmas covers has instead become a thought-provoking album, taking on a life of its own, making you forget it’s still a Christmas album.
Christmas Spirit takes a tumble right around “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” but makes up for it by following it up a little later with “Feliz Navidad,” originally performed and composed by José Feliciano. Their sweet, south-of-the-border instrumental version of “Silent Night” makes you forget the true meaning of the song and becomes a simple yet surreal piece of music. The soothing guitar relaxes you slowly out of the album and leaves you wanting more, and ready to start it over.
The greatest part of the album is the fact that Los Lonely Boys know who they are—they rock it as always, and they don’t make any excuses or change anything about their style for this, their first Christmas album. Los Lonely Boys rock Christmas using their heritage as an inspirational flavor to season some of the season’s most memorable songs. Christmas Spirit is a perfect example of how thinking outside the box and doing things in your own way can pay off, and this album pays off tremendously. Singing the songs in their own way, they add a more comfy and cozy feeling to the music—exactly what you want for a holiday as family-centered as Christmas. B+ | Jennifer Manjarez