We’ve waited almost THIRTY YEARS for this occasion. It’s Christmas! In October! Backstreet style!
I’m a HUGE Christmas fan. I’m also a lover of Christmas music, especially the newer, more modern pop Christmas songs. We break out the Christmas music before Thanksgiving and my son requires that we listen to it well past New Year’s, so #AVeryBackstreetChristmas, the Backstreet Boys first ever holiday album, will be right at home in our house!
I’ve been excited and anticipating this music for weeks, months, hell years! And honestly, it did not disappoint. We know the boys have some serious talent, but hearing them on these classics was another level. Their harmonies are so beautiful and the way they lend themselves to these Christmas songs just gives me chills and brings me Christmas Joy! Although I love Christmas music, the older classics have less of a place in our home. But with the Backstreet spin, they sound fresh, yet classic. I don’t know how they manage to do that, but I appreciate that so much!
Throughout the album, the thing that stuck out most to me was their voices…they seemed to adjust their voices to be more…Christmasy… AJ’s voice was slick as ever, but he was reaching into a lower tone that I LOVED. Howie seemed to be reaching higher heights than he does on previous records. And they all sounded amazing! And we got so much diversity in the songs! Every boy had some great solos and I. AM. HERE. FOR. IT. I LOVE when they display all of their voices. And this album has Kevin ALL OVER IT! I need that in my life!
I was pretty surprised with their rendition of Winter Wonderland. I would have put money on O Holy Night being Acapella, but Winter Wonderland? And it is so good! Love the way they blend on this song. May be playing this on a loop.
Here are my thoughts on each of the Christmas songs:
White Christmas: Ok, AJ’s voice right off the bat! Love the low tone! And then Howie comes in with the complete contrast…genius musical choices! I LOVE the way they approached this one! It’s got the obvious Backstreet harmonies and their unique take on such a well-known song. SO GOOD!
The Christmas Song: This song has been covered so many times, but hearing the boys on it makes my day. The way they added their flair!
Winter Wonderland: KEVIN! How long has it been since we got a Kevin intro on a song!? And so much of him! And ACAPELLA!? They NEED to make this a regular thing…every album they do from here until the end of time really needs to have something (or lots of somethings) acapella. One complaint: Why is it so short!? Give me more!!
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas: Ummm….this might have jumped quite a bit on my list of favorite Christmas songs. I haven’t always enjoyed this one, depending on the version. But wow, the boys did it serious justice. Nick and AJ taking those notes high and sounding incredible doing it….I was in love with this one.
Last Christmas: This is one of the best pop Christmas songs to ever be released, so imagine my excitement when the boys put it out as their first single! I LOVE the way AJ and Kevin sound together on the second verse. I love the way they really did mimic the Wham! version, but still somehow added their own twist to the song. It is very Backstreet, while still being fully recognizable, which I love!
O Holy Night: This has been my favorite Christmas Song for years. I still remember 98 degrees did a version on their Christmas album decades ago and I played it on repeat for years. This is definitely my new favorite version (sorry Jeff…) The harmonies on this version! This is such a classic song, with so much beauty just in the way the song was developed. Put the Backstreet vocals over that and we have such a classic hit! This one took my breath away.
This Christmas: This one is probably the least recognizable from the original for me. It’s a fun beat and I like that it is mid/up tempo. And of course, they sound like they’re having a ton of fun on this one!
Same Old Lang Syne: As a Christmas music fan, I’m ashamed to admit that I didn’t recognize this song until the very end. PS, AJ, your ending there with that higher voice…so good. The song is beautiful. The strings!!! That live orchestra behind their voices! I could use a live orchestra behind the boys on tour…just a thought.
Silent Night: This one is such a classic and has been one of my favorite Christmas songs my whole life. Kevin and Nick taking that verse together…wow. And the whole group harmonies…again with the harmonies! Amazing.
I’ll Be Home for Christmas: This is an interesting version to this song. When I think of this song, I tend to think of it as being more up-tempo. This one sounds like a great throwback to the doo wop days and the boys do it so well. Can we please talk about Howie and Kevin’s vocals? They sound so amazing all over these songs! But I LOVE when they sing one after the other because of the way their voices play off one another. Seriously LOVE.
Christmas in New York: When I listened to this song I was immediately transported back to olden days with the feel. Obviously, this is a brand new song, but it has a throwback feel with the way the music is arranged and even the boys approach to the vocals. It definitely felt like a classic!
Together: The funky beat starts right out! It doesn’t really sound like a Christmas song, but I definitely love the feel! I’d love to see them do this one live….I bet it would be a fun performance! Likely my new favorite song (or at least my favorite for the holiday season).
Happy Days: This song wraps up the album in a nice Christmas bow! It’s another upbeat song and I love the meaning. I especially love the instrumentation on this song. I can see this one being a hit too! Maybe we can have lots of Christmas singles…
Thanks boys for bringing us Christmas so early this year!