WE REVIEW THE NEW SINGLE FROM MONIQUE ANGELE – SING TOGETHER ON CHRISTMAS
Christmas songs are a notoriously divisive craft. They vary profoundly in content – take the contrast between Lennon’s ‘Merry Xmas (War is Over)’ and McCartney’s ‘Wonderful Christmastime’ – and they vary prodigiously in quality – the glorious chaos of Slade’s ‘Merry Xmas Everyone’ compared to the group-sung dreariness of ‘Do They Know it’s Christmas Time’, for example.
One recent entry into this ever-growing banquet of audible festivities arrives courtesy of Monique Angele – whose piano ballads sung with a theatrical flair have gained the Canadian-Australian vocalist a respectable following.
The release of this seasonal song is perhaps unsurprising. Angele’s gently performed yet operatically delivered vocals have always sounded like a suitable backdrop for Christmas. She even released her version of ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas’ last year. And an original has been in the making for a while, with Angele’s mother requesting something of this sort from her daughter for years.
The finale product – ‘Sing Together on Christmas’ – delivers the desired outcome sweetly. The verses croon while the choruses sore as Angele sings of the joy of communal singing, as well as the perennial but ordinarily rare sounds of ‘Jingle bells and laughter all around. It’s twee holiday-pop, but it’s sung with enough genuine happiness that only the sourest of scrooges would be deterred.
Instrumentally, serene piano passages build explosive choruses. There is even the distant pa-rum-pum-pum-pum of a little drummer boy practicing far away. The predictability is seismic. But then again, it is Christmas, so maybe I should lighten up.