Mark Tremonti

Christmas Classics New & Old

rating icon 8 / 10

Track listing:

01. The Most Wonderful Time of the Year
02. Jingle Bells
03. The Christmas Song
04. Christmas Morning
05. The First Noel
06. Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town
07. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
08. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
09. O Holy Night
10. This Christmas

What's a hard rock guitarist to do when they get into the holiday spirit? Put together a Christmas album, of course. Mark Tremonti (CREED, ALTER BRIDGE and TREMONTI) is doing exactly that with his debut holiday album, "Christmas Classics New & Old". But, before you get ready to shred, what's fascinating about this record is just how traditional it sounds. Don't expect a rocked-out version of your favorite holiday tune. Instead, Tremonti serves up a very traditional-sounding record. In fact, if you didn't know it was Tremonti singing and playing here, you might think it was your standard pop artist making a holiday collection.

Not that sounding traditional is a bad thing. If anything, the classic, warm sound on "Christmas Classics New & Old" is refreshing coming from someone as seeped in hard rock as Tremonti. As with his album of Frank Sinatra covers, he shows that he's an incredibly versatile player.

"Christmas Classics New & Old" begins with "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year", which ushers in classic-sounding horns and sleigh bells, before Tremonti comes in with his warm baritone, singing the holiday classic. On this song, and most of record's traditional holiday songs, there are few surprises. The arrangements stay true to the originals, making this an album for the whole family.

While "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" sounds orthodox, the album's next track, "Jingle Bells", sounds even more like it belongs on "It's A Wonderful Life"'s soundtrack. "Jingle Bells" begins with, yes, jingle bells, and launches into a caroling anthem, with a team of carolers spreading the holiday cheer.

"The Christmas Song" is a highlight on the set, as there's something about the track's warm atmospheres and sonics that make you feel ensconced next to a roaring fire with hot cocoa. The song's slippery, slick production really fits, as well. Next up is another strong point, a Tremonti original called "Christmas Morning". This song features understated instrumentals and Tremonti's comforting vocals, as he sings about waiting for Christmas and looking forward to snuggling with his lady and watching kids open Christmas gifts. Other traditional holiday songs also sound especially festive, such as "Let It Snow" and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas".

If someone in the 1990s were to have said Mark Tremonti from CREED would one day release a Christmas record, it would have been a pretty unbelievable statement. But, here we are, and this release just shows how much he and his generation of musicians has grown and evolved. The collection is a refreshing and timeless release that will likely please fans of traditional holiday music. It's also ageless, so "Christmas Classics New & Old" can be enjoyed for decades to come.

Author: Anne Erickson
  • facebook
  • twitter
  • reddit
  • email

Comments Disclaimer And Information

BLABBERMOUTH.NET uses the Facebook Comments plugin to let people comment on content on the site using their Facebook account. The comments reside on Facebook servers and are not stored on BLABBERMOUTH.NET. To comment on a BLABBERMOUTH.NET story or review, you must be logged in to an active personal account on Facebook. Once you're logged in, you will be able to comment. User comments or postings do not reflect the viewpoint of BLABBERMOUTH.NET and BLABBERMOUTH.NET does not endorse, or guarantee the accuracy of, any user comment. To report spam or any abusive, obscene, defamatory, racist, homophobic or threatening comments, or anything that may violate any applicable laws, use the "Report to Facebook" and "Mark as spam" links that appear next to the comments themselves. To do so, click the downward arrow on the top-right corner of the Facebook comment (the arrow is invisible until you roll over it) and select the appropriate action. You can also send an e-mail to blabbermouthinbox(@) with pertinent details. BLABBERMOUTH.NET reserves the right to "hide" comments that may be considered offensive, illegal or inappropriate and to "ban" users that violate the site's Terms Of Service. Hidden comments will still appear to the user and to the user's Facebook friends. If a new comment is published from a "banned" user or contains a blacklisted word, this comment will automatically have limited visibility (the "banned" user's comments will only be visible to the user and the user's Facebook friends).