Music review by Luchae Williams
American Christian folktronica musician, David Crowder, released his first holiday-themed album in 2011, under his stage name Crowder. The festive collection, titled Oh For Joy, is a mixture of classic rock, pop and folk — a sound that the singer is well known for.
In fact, if you are familiar with Crowder and his funky fresh sound, it would come as no surprise that this eight-song collection is filled with musical experimentation at it’s very best!
The album opener, Joy To The World, is a festive array of electronics, catchy guitar riffs and David Crowder’s bellowing vocals, delivering the popular Christmas anthem to us with intention. There is a slight mix, in the song’s bridge, where he’s added new lyrics that say “Oh for joy/Lift up your voice/The Christ has come/The Christ has come!”
I love the almost pop-sounding rhythm of his version of The First Noel. The song, usually sung as a ballad, is given a fresh take, while still maintaining the melody that we have come to love. The same can be said for classics such as Go, Tell It On The Mountain and O Holy Night.
I love the folk inspired sound of Angels We Have Heard On High, complete with fiddles and a catchy bass line! The popular Christmas anthem, O Come O Come Emmanuel is given a bluegrass feel, with crooning vocals and amazing guitar solos that create an atmosphere of reverence.
The intro of Silent Night is probably one of my favorite moments on the album. With melodic acoustic guitar drawing us in, the song was recorded with a crowd singing along, creating a moment of reflection and worship as we remember the birth and life of Jesus.
Album closer, Carol Of The Bells/Christmas Eve, does a spectacular job at pulling it all together, in an orchestral display of excellence! This live recording of the classic is done in true celebration style and ends the album off nicely.
If you’re looking for a Christmas album, with a difference, this EP could be one to grab. David Crowder’s heart for worship, and musical genius, is beautifully paired in this offering and I highly recommend it.