Album: Tracey Thorn, Tinsel and Lights (Strange Feeling)
Tracey Thorn takes a wider brief than usual for her Christmas Album Tinsel & Lights, mostly avoiding the routine carols and standards in favour of left-field choices from writers like Stephin Merritt, Sufjan Stevens and Low, the wonderfully oblique melody of whose "Taking Down the Tree" affords a lovely duet with Green Gartside of Scritti Politti. Gartside's own "Snow in Sun" is another highlight, cleverly paired with Randy Newman's "Snow".
Elsewhere, brass band illuminates the dream of escape in Joni Mitchell's "River", while Thorn's own "Joy" offers a more secular take on the season.
Download: Joy; Taking Down the Tree; River; Snow in Sun
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