Release Date: November 3rd 2017
Reviewed by: Joshua Andre
- Bring On The Holidays
- Light Of Christmas (with Owl City)
- Can’t Wait For Christmas (feat. Relient K)
- Mary’s Boy Child (feat. Jamie Grace)
- Little Drummer Boy (Christmas Remix)
- Christmas This Year (feat. Leigh Nash)
- The First Noel (feat. Owl City)
- This Christmas (Father Of The Fatherless) (feat. Nirva Ready)
- O Come All Ye Faithful
- The First Noel (DJ Heavenbound Remix) (feat. Owl City)
It’s 7 weeks til Christmas guys! It’s getting closer and closer. So while we dream of the perfect Christmas present, or wonder whether we are going to buy a real tree or fake tree this year, or frantically run around thinking that we can be Superman, and organise the whole Christmas dinner; we can sit back and listen to Christmas songs and read review of thoroughly engaging albums of our Saviour’s birth and the hope for all mankind. While this year we have reviewed Christmas albums from Point Of Grace, Casting Crowns and Hannah Kerr right now for 2017, it’s time to delve into yet another artist releasing a holiday project. TobyMac’s Light Of Christmas is kinda a best of project- a collection of his most popular and treasured Christmas melodies, as well as some new recordings thrown in, and the result is nothing short of impressive and encouraging.
The 2016 written smash hit single “Bring On The Holidays” opens proceedings, and is a great way to get into the Christmas spirit. As Toby eloquently recounts about how he longs to be away from touring life, and at home with his family during the holidays, he ardently inspires all, as he declares ‘….I love the holidays, never too far away, cause no matter where I go, I find my way back home…’, a sentiment that we all should strive for, as we all spend Christmas with our loved ones, celebrating the birth of Jesus. The title track, electronic and remix-y in nature, and featuring Owl City, is next, as Toby and Adam trade vocals effortlessly, echoing the ever-true notion that ‘…a thousand angels are singing out, to God Almighty we’re bowing down, and that’s what Christmas is all about…’; while the tongue-in-cheek “Can’t Wait For Christmas” features Relient K, as Matt Thiessen and Matt Hoopes each work with Toby vocally quite well, as the vocalists express that love for Christmas, listing off reasons why the December 25th holiday is so special.
The next 6 tracks (yep, 6!), are all poignant and enjoyable, reminding us all of the reason for the season; however we’ve heard them all before. They are indeed the first 6 tracks of Christmas In Diverse City, TobyMac’s 2011 Christmas album. So it’s nothing new if you think about it. Perhaps Toby could have scattered these offerings around the album, and not consecutively. But “Mary’s Boy Child” (with Jamie Grace on guest vocals!), “Little Drummer Boy” (a new and updated remix!), “Christmas This Year” (featuring Leigh Nash), “The First Noel” (featuring Owl City), “This Christmas (Father To The Fatherless)” (Featuring Nirva Ready), and “O Come All Ye Faithful” are some of my favourite Christmas songs from Toby ever, so it’s nice to hear these holiday worship anthems yet again, as we praise Jesus’ name and lift Him up on high. While Light Of Christmas ends with the new before heard remix of “The First Noel”, a track that has me tapping my toes and jumping for joy, singing out ‘…Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel, born is the King of Israel…’.
With an amazing repertoire of songs already recorded, TobyMac’s latest offering Light Of Christmas is an album to be dwelled upon and re-listened to this holiday season, as we think about and ponder Jesus coming to earth as a baby and saving us through becoming the Saviour for all mankind all those years ago. Toby, and his guest vocalists Jamie Grace, Owl City, Leigh Nash, Relient K and Nirva Ready, have sung their hearts out, and made their versions of famous carols their own. Having me very excited for Toby’s next full length all original album (in 2018 maybe?), you will not be disappointed when you listen to this project, even though it only contains mostly familiar tracks. Well done Toby, for an engaging Christmas experience, and I hope many people are blessed by your stand for Christ!
3 songs to listen to: Bring On The Holidays, This Christmas (Father Of The Fatherless), O Come All Ye Faithful
RIYL: Britt Nicole, Newsboys, Kevin Max, Lecrae, Manic Drive