“These Christmas Lights” – Matt Redman

It’s that time of year again where Christmas is on the horizon.  This year for Christmas Tree Day (Cup Day – 1st November to most people) we went looking for some new music to help us get in a festive mood and this was the album that kicked it all off for us in 2016.

After the success of Chris Tomlin’s  ‘Glory in the Highest’ (2009) and ‘Adore’ (2015) we went looking for something new that we could bring to our church congregation in the lead up to this Christmas season and I reckon we found it. Tomlin’s album-mate Matt Redman has released his 2016 Christmas Album ‘These Christmas Lights’ and I reckon it is the perfect album for church (and my work) community this season.  With a fresh feel to some of the favourite Christmas carols, there are loads of applications for this album and it certainly won’t offend the purists too much.

As a background album (which was our Christmas Tree day intention) the music is non invasive and stays consistently pleasant and lyrics remain unobscured by extraneous modulation.

“Nearly every track on this collection moves the listener toward that personal experience of the holiday season, most notably “Help From Heaven (feat. Natasha Bedingfield),” “How Far,” “The Name of Emmanuel” and “Angels (Singing Gloria).” – CCM Magazine, Nov 2016

As a congregational worship album the music remains singable, lyrically intact and musically relevant to the congregation of current (to recent) musical taste.  One standout song that I think you will hear making an appearance in congregations for Christmas 16/17 is ‘Oh Little Town (The Glory of Christmas)’. Em’s not so sure but I stand by my decision.

“Utilizing the words of the hymn “O Little Town of Bethlehem” but set to a fresh melody, the anthemic chorus is what will get the masses to lift  their voices in powerful exaltation.”  – Hallels Christian Music, Oct 2016.

 I encourage you to get onto this album this year and get it into your worship sets as we lead towards Christmas. Enjoy this Christmas and remember (as I’m predicting we will be hearing more of this Christmas…) The glory of Christmas is the story of his love.

Dave George.

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