Title - 'It Snows In Heaven Too' (Remastered Edition)
Artist - Annie Haslam
For those not in the know, Annie Haslam is an English vocalist, songwriter, and painter who is best known as the lead singer of progressive rock band Renaissance since 1971; and for her long and diverse solo singing career.
Indeed, she has a five-octave vocal range and from 2002, Haslam has developed a parallel career as a visual artist, producing paintings on canvas, painted musical instruments, and giclées.
Esoteric Recordings have just released (November 29th, 2019) the digitally remastered edition of It Snows In Heaven Too, the magnificent, and so well received Christmas album by the acclaimed Renaissance vocalist.
Originally issued on Annie's White Dove label in 2000, the album has been unavailable for many years and features Annie's unique interpretation of Christmas songs and Carols, both traditional and contemporary.
1. 'Oh Holy Night'
2. 'Silent Night'
3. 'The Snowman'
4. 'It Snows in Heaven Too'
5. 'It Came Upon a Midnight Clear'
6. 'Joy to the World'
7. 'The Christmas Song'
8. 'Ave Maria'
9. 'We Three Kings'
10. 'The Little Drummer Boy'
11. 'Christmas Time Is Here'
12. 'Away in a Manger'
13. 'O Come, O Come Immanuel'
14. 'Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas'
15. 'Hark! the Herald Angels Sing'
16. 'White Christmas'
I absolutely love Christmas music - authentic Christmas music. I can listen to Carols from Trinity all day long.
However, Christmas is a time for marketing mischief as one hack after another slaps something together in hopes of making a few easy sheckles.
The good news is, It Snows In Heaven Too shines out for its appeal is universal. This is the kind of CD you will return to year after year, and enjoy every time.
The blend of secular with religious is nicely done; there are many standards as well as a couple of surprises. The arrangements are spare - thank goodness - no goopy strings, cloying choirs, ham-fisted extras.
The emphasis is always squarely where it belongs, on Annie's extraordinary vocal performances.
I will say that she possesses an exquisite voice, and her high notes are sweet as candy. But what I notice most about her singing is the gorgeous diction.
Today, her English accent is almost gone, but she caresses each word as though she were on the boards at the Old Vic.
Haslam sings with the utmost care, precision, and clarity - absolutely enchanting considering today incomprehensibility is fashionable if not de rigueur.
In an age of mediocrity, and a season of wretched excess, treat yourself to the real thing. This is Christmas as it should be and thus It Snows In Heaven Too (Remastered Edition) (and with fully restored artwork) is sure to appeal to all fans of Annie Haslam and Renaissance as the Yuletide season approaches.
Official CD Purchase Link