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Peter Furler Christmas feat. David Ian

iTunes:Web Cover Peter Furler Christmas Featuring David Ian

Grammy Nominated Australian Singer-Songwriter, PETER FURLER delivers his debut Christmas record. He has over 7 million album sales to his credit alongside extensive worldwide touring throughout the course of his career. With an international perspective in mind, he collaborates with 2013 Wall Street Journal favorited, Canadian-born David Ian whose unique affinity for the Vintage Christmas sound reaches a new level. Using singers and musicians from around the world including America, Armenia, Lebanon, Russia, and South Africa, the artists bring you an unparalleled cultured Christmas experience ringing sounds of the holiday season from ancient past to present.  From the traditional orchestration of ”O Come All Ye Faithful” to the deconstructed ”O Come O Come Emmanuel”, the arrangements reflect a solemn respect for these timeless Christmas classics. For example, Furler’s introspective vocal delivery on ”We Three Kings” coupled with haunting melodies of the Duduk (Indigenous Armenian wind instrument), reinvigorates the often dismissed Christmas carol. The signature vintage sound of David Ian stays true and develops as he draws from his own cultural background. This album equally suits a meditative evening by the fire, or a dinner party with family and friends.

Album Review

Whatever it is, if it involves David Ian, I'm interested, and Dave joins singer Peter Furler for an unusual but quite appetizing holiday disc in Christmas. He also produced and co-arranged the outing with Furler, so what more need I say? Plenty. And I will. Furler's vocal ruminations upon classic songs well known to all are going to raise a few eyebrows, as just the first cut, God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, demonstrates. Furler, well known in Australia through sales of seven million albums and a Grammy nomination, amplifies the laconic elements in his year-end holiday's works as though coming from a sidestream of Nightmare Before Christmas. I ain'tjoking, and that's what first nailed my ears to the speakers in a much solemner occasion than the oft humorous film's oeuvre but quite in synch with the flick's character and atmospherics. In that glorious film, were I forced to choose one song typifying the vibe and sonics here, it'd be Sally's Song.

Then there's the eerie but beautiful O Come, O Come, Emmanuel, stately while seemingly issuing from Edgar Allan Poe's humble abode, it sticks in the mind and extends far beyond the observation of the vernal equinox to stand as a short exercise in pure art. He does the same with O Come All Ye Faithful, my favorite cut. Throughout, Ian is the second 'voice', his piano comping Furler every step of the way among a well chosen set of accompanists and heavenly background singers. I'm at odd ends to compare Pete's voice with anyone, as it's not a common one but, again, the shades of Nightmare Before Christmas draw near and the guy could easily have been a plaintive character in the dazzlingly strange animated outing. Two cuts are even short spoken dramas upon liturgical extracts with chamber music backings, kinda like the Patrick Stewart spots in Nightmare, interludes in the string of songs. Little Drummer Boy even comes close to the Charlie Brown Christmas milieu, Ian talking a Guaraldi-esque position, but, regardless, words will not quite describe this unusual gig, and I now place it with some of my offbeat faves by The Ghsotly Trio and others.
- Mark S. Tucker, Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange