Tuesday, November 03, 2009
MY DAD once bought an album called A Medieval Christmas, a double CD of deadpan monks chanting.
It became a legend in our house as the most dour, depressing soundtrack to the festive season imaginable - we would challenge ourselves to endure as much as we could before reaching for Slade.
Therefore knowing Tori Amos's penchant for piano-led, moody ballads, I approached Midwinter Graces, dubbed her 'Christmas' album, with a little trepidation.
Luckily, I need not have - although there are still more lush string arrangements than jingle bells on display, the collection is a gift to her fans.
Because despite Christmas being a time of indulgence, having a focal point has helped Amos avoid the problems of her other album this year, Abnormally Attracted To Sin, which was overlong and jumbled.
Instead her talents shine through on an album that warms like a roaring fire.