November 1, 2009

Exclusive : First reaction to "Christmas in Bethlehem"

I have listened to clips from all the songs at the new album "Christmas in Bethlehem". Here are my reactions:
1. Heaven In My Arms: English version of "Himlen i min famn", and the production sounds very similar to the 1999 album version. Lyrics: "Are you one of many more / Or the one they're waiting for / You, my little child / So close to my heart".

2. Hark, the Herald Angels Sing: Original English version of "Lyss till änglasångens ord" from "I denna natt blir världen ny". Production sounds identical with back-up vocals by Aygun Beyler & Mahsa Vahdat.

3. Silent Night: Sounds like "Stilla natt" from "I denna natt blir världen ny" with Carola and Hans-Erik Dyvik Husby (great, husky voice) singing one line each.

4. Find My Way to Bethlehem: Brand new song. In the clip I heard, it sounds like a ballad. Lyrics: "Along the road I'm walking / To You I turn my prayer / Among all voices talking / Is Yours the one I hear".

5. Poor Little Jesus: Song Carola hasn't recorded before, a duet with Gladys del Pilar. Old spiritual song. Slide guitars make me think country music.

6. O Holy Night: Sounds like "O helga natt" from "Jul i Betlehem" where Carola and Paul Potts sing two lines each.

7. From Heaven High: I thought this could be a new song, but it's an English version of "Ett barn är fött på denna dag". Production sounds like the version on "I denna natt blir världen ny".

8. Good Christian Rejoice: Song Carola hasn't recorded before. Old Christmas Carol more famous in America. Sounds nice in Carola's version.

9. The Little Drummer Boy: Sounds identical with the version on "Jul i Betlehem", but the clip didn't include Blues' rap, so I don't know if he is rapping in English...

10. O Sanctissima: Song Carola hasn't recorded before. English version of a song often performed in latin. In Sweden we know it as psalm 53: "O du saliga / O du heliga / Nådebringande juledag".

11. Heaven Turned Out To Be a Child: I think this is a brand new song. Another ballad in a duet with Julian Erlandson, who also turned out to be a child...

12. O Little Town of Bethlehem: English original version of "O Bethlehem, du lilla stad" from "Jul i Betlehem". Production sounds identical.

13. Go Tell it On the Mountain: Sounds identical to the version on "I denna natt blir världen ny".

14. This Very Night the World Will Change: English version of "I denna natt blir världen ny". Production sounds identical. Lyrics: "Night after night ancient soldiers have spent / Watching the place from a tower or tent / But walls that surround the old town can't prevent / God's wonders from setting us free".

15. O Come All Ye Faithful: English original version of "Dagen är kommen", sound identical to the version on "Jul i Betlehem".
Overall the album sounds great, but I hoped for a few new versions of the songs previously recorded. Now we get the same versions one more time, although in English... Remember, this is only after listening to short clips of each song.

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