She & Him Brighten the Holidays
A Very She & Him Christmas boasts twelve beautiful songs. The arrangement is simple: M. Ward on guitar and Zooey on vocals, with an occasional thoughtful piano or ukelele in the background. Unlike many modern artists, these two immensely talented artists don’t hijack the song and remix it to death. The album is not flashy or glitzy, like the Christmas holiday has become in recent years. They respect the simplicity and sanctity of Christmas music.
Their version of “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” is as melancholy and bittersweet as the original but features a somewhat bluesy twist. In fact, Ward and Deschanel cover quite a few of the slower Christmas classics like “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” and “Silver Bells.”
On the other hand, “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” offers an upbeat listen for the holiday. My personal favorite off the album, “Little Saint Nick,” is lively and fun. Zooey’s sweet, innocent voice is perfectly suited to the song’s festive subject matter. Proving that there is more to the sunglasses-wearing guitarist than meets the eye, M. Ward contributes vocals to “Sleigh Ride.” Naturally, “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” is included on the playlist, just as a blonde Zooey sang it while starring in Elf. This time M. Ward, not Will Ferrell, is her male couterpart.
Overall, this CD is a winner in the vast and oftentimes irritating realm of holiday music. So don’t resort to radio Christmas music and sour the Christmas spirit when A Very She & Him Christmas offers a nostalgic and unique option.