It's time again for the Christmas season! Some have been looking forward to the contemplative…
Jessie J – This Christmas Day
With two albums within six months that have nothing to do with each other, the output of Jessie J was not only record-breaking in 2018, but also exceptionally generous. In May there was the concept plate “ROSE” (read HERE again our criticism) with 16 tracks that surprised musically and made the album the best and most demanding pop of the year – since the end of October there is now “This Christmas Day” and so on the first Christmas songs from Jessica Ellen Cornish. And this fact brings the church back to the village, so that there was a lot of new material and new sound with “R.O.S.E.”, but this is all the miserable with the current longplayer. “This Christmas Day” delivers just 35 (!) Minutes of music to eleven songs, of which ten are cover versions and only a self-written contribution from Jessie is controlled.
First to the rough facts. Christmas Mukke has it’s not easy. Would you like new songs that are difficult to get into the ranks of the great Christmashits or instead warm up to expectant All Time Favs? You can usually never do it right – and unfortunately, the greatest vocal talent of the last 10 years is not possible either. What do you think, which songs could be on a Christmas album? Remember Evergreens and you’ll soon find what you’re looking for: “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”, “Rockin ‘Around The Christmas Tree”, “Jingle Bell Rock”, “Jingle Bells”, “Rudolph the Red Noses Reindeer”, “Let It Snow “,” Winter Wonderland “,” Silent Night “,” White Christmas “. Madness. That’s never happened. At least, “Last Christmas” and “All I Want For Christmas Is You” left their fingers out. There is a lack of creativity on “This Christmas Day”. But, where Jessie J is on it, luckily, there’s also Jessie J inside. Vocally, this is all well delivered, but also not completely unusual interpretation. Jessie J sings immaculately as always, but also a bit withdrawn. You could have gotten more out of it. Really a pity, instead, are the predictable arrangements that are all wrapped in Swing / Jazz / Big Band wrapping paper and are tied with a red bow – looks very nice at first glance, but is also boring.
It It is really not easy to be able to give such a great singer so few samples. But in fact “This Christmas Day” is 80% elevator music. Especially noticeable is the background sound at “Let It Snow”. The instrumental parts are not impressive solos but fillers that every keyboard can play. Thankfully, the plate does not represent a total failure! In the “The Christmas Song”, which is very well-known in America, the Briton delivers the first and unfortunately only emotional depth and touches. The track could already be heard by many greats in less good. Intimacy, personality, real saxophone and charm. Where the hell is it all the rest? The duet “Winter Wonderland” with Boyz II Men is ok, but nothing more – here, too, a lot of potential in unspectacular production was made to fizzle out. With the only self-written song “This Christmas Day” the listener is more demanding, because just unfamiliar – came around a song that reminds a little on the beat of “I’m Not The Only One” by Sam Smith, bring choir and as an average Christmas ballad turns out. After a good half hour, all the mess is over, and she did not really feel it started.
Jessie J posted on her Instagram profile that she was extremely late for a Christmas record and had to hurry. You can hear that. How wonderful would it have been to hear a worthy “O Holy Night” interpretation? Or a “Fairytale Of New York” with a grown-up colleague? Or a Christmas version of one of her own great songs, e.g. “Who You Are”? Would. For example, after unpacking the gift paper, there are mostly burnt Christmas cookies in the interior instead of delicious cocoa macaroons.
You can buy the album “This Christmas Day” here. *
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