'Great. Another sterile, plastic, cash-grab of a Christmas hits disc,' I think instinctually every year when something like this comes out, no matter who's on the cover. Then I thought twice. 'Well, Patti LaBelle probably will bring an extra dimension of soul to this extortion tradition....' When I saw 'Produced by Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis' at the bottom of the disc, my cynicism melted faster than a Christmas snowflake hit by global warming.
An inspired and ear-warming new holiday song, boringly titled Christmas Jam, is the first surprise among many. The vibrating piano stabs supporting the complex layers of sweet vocals on What Do The Lonely Do At Christmas? make this tune good enough to play in July -- not that you would, though. The dance-happy Nativity and an awkward Soul Seekers collaboration are the only broken lights.
Everything else shines bright. Amen.