If On A Winter’s Night… (Deutsche Grammophon)
When it was mentioned to Sting that perhaps he should make a seasonal record, something most adult-contemporary artists do at this time of year, the singer took the suggestion perhaps a bit too literally. If On A Winter’s Night is not to be labelled a Christmas album, but rather a “winter album.”
To Sting’s credit, he really does make an effort to avoid the banalities of a Christmas cash grab by sidestepping the covered-to-death standards. Backed by a group of classically trained pros, he sings mostly traditional English folk tunes, including The Snow It Melts The Soonest, whose origins are in Sting’s native Newcastle. The overall effect here, and this will certainly not appeal to everyone, is like being snowed in with Sting.
Top track: The Burning Babe