Tinsel and Lights
SOULFUL British singer Tracey Thorn is an unlikely choice for a Christmas album. But she’s the kind of singer who can make festive tunes palatable all year round.
As a solo act and the voice of Everything But the Girl, Thorn has been more in tune with deeply felt melancholy than the plastic, super- happy festive season albums turned in recently by Rod Stewart, Travolta ’ n’ Newton- John or even one- man riot Cee- Lo Green.
Thorn and hubby DJ Ben Watt picked her material carefully with only one obvious selection in Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, which she turns into a tidy strings and piano ballad. The bulk of this set are covers of Joni Mitchell, Randy Newman, Jack White and Sufjan Stevens.
She’s also penned two originals. The title track looks back at the pleasure of Christmas past, a chance to fall in love with it all over again, and Joy is about capturing a child- like sense of the occasion.