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Downhere - How Many Kings
Last modified: 02 Nov 2009

Downhere - How Many Kings
Buy 'How Many Kings'
I probably should have been annoyed by being asked to review a Christmas album in October but truth be told, I've been planning the office Christmas decorations for about a month already. I love Christmas; the celebration, the decorations, the build up and the one month of the year when you can listen to funky, often naff, Christmas themed music. So I was looking forward to adding some to new songs to this year's playlist.

'How Many Kings' opens up the album with strong guitars and great harmonies but lacks the Christmas feeling I was expecting. This is the kind of song that would work brilliantly at a modern Christmas Carol event and that was what I was expecting from the rest of the album. Moving into God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen is a risky move. It's a song that has been covered countless times and, unfortunately, this isn't one of the better versions I have heard. Don't get me wrong it is a really interesting arrangement and is very nicely interpreted but there are some awesome versions out there.

Christmas In Our Hearts brings the album to life with a fun, upbeat and funky feel before Silent Night brings it back down to its mellow roots with beautiful vocals and passion. Good King Wenceslas is another song which has been covered to the max and this version, while funky, is a little too chaotic in places to make it stand out from others.

What Child Is This? brings another flavour to the mix with almost Spanish sounding guitars which gives it a pretty cool effect but confused me when the language changed to French (at least I think it was French! If it was Spanish, it makes much more sense)

One of the high points on the album is the really modern, fresh sounding Glory To God In The Highest with it's really cool arrangement leading into We Wish You A Merry Christmas which sums the album up for me; I can see why they did it, just not sure it really works.

Review by Suzanne Physick

Stand Out Tracks
Christmas In Our Hearts
Glory To God In The Highest
How Many Kings [Re-Imagined
]
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