Mini-Review: Natalie Grant – Believe

Natalie Grant

Believe

Label: Curb Records

Release Date: October 25th 2005 (Amazon mp3/iTunes)

Track Listing:

  1. O Come, All Ye Faithful
  2. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
  3. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
  4. I Believe
  5. O Little Town Of Bethlehem
  6. Joy To The World
  7. That’s What Christmas Means To Me
  8. Silver Bells / Savior Came For Me / O Holy Night (Medley)
  9. One Child / O Come, All Ye Faithful (Reprise)
  10. Sweet Little Jesus Boy

Initial thoughts: A powerhouse vocalist similar in style to Celine Dion- Natalie’s vocals are like no other, and her stellar Christmas album is worth it to listen and buy purely on vocals alone! Is this album 15 years old? This album is like fine wine- gets better and better with age!

Reason to listen: One of my favourite Christmas albums of all time, with a perfect mix of worshipful melodies, original tunes and holiday tunes. Need I say more?

Reason to buy: As the perfect moving and inspiring alternative to the underwhelming yet popular Michael Bublé Christmas album, and the sadly monotonous Rascal Flatts Christmas album. There’s songs that give us tons of emotions too (like the title track!)

Reason to skip: I can’t think of any reason to skip this album. Unless you think Natalie’s voice is too powerful and too enthusiastic…

No. of carols: 8

No. of originals: 2

No of guest artists: None. But Natalie’s voice is so heavenly and magical… she doesn’t need any guest vocalist- because even if she did, she’d outshine them vocally anyway!

Does it have heart?: I reckon this is one of the most passionate and exquisite works of art ever to grace our ears around Christmas time. Yes, it does have heart! Every Natalie Grant album has heart!

Does it have a Christmas-y atmosphere?: With every track driven by the piano, there is a Christmas-y feel to it, but it is reserved and contemplative, and not grandiose or big like Pentatonix. The atmosphere may not be as Christmas-y as one might have first thought, but the atmosphere is still there!

Uniqueness?: I don’t think this album is that unique, but Natalie’s powerful voice (especially on “Joy To The World”) and her infectious and contagious joy is more than enough to keep us all interested and thoroughly enjoying this timeless classic!

Christmas message: The gospel is definitely preached here, through songs like “O Holy Night”, “Joy To The World” and the original “I Believe”. I don’t think it’s that preachy… but I’m a Christian and I’m obviously biased. Hopefully non-believers can be touched by this inspiring album, and be blessed by the message of Jesus that is evident across these songs.

Closing thoughts: Natalie Grant has recorded a Christmas album for the ages, and the fact that this project is still in rotation on my iTunes and Spotify playlists 15 years later, means that this is an album that is extremely special!

3 songs to listen to: I Believe, Joy To The World, That’s What Christmas Means To Me

Overall rating: 4.5/5

Yes/no; why/why not?: Believe is pretty short at 10 tracks long. But I would buy this album in a heart beat- and you all should too. Because I’m certain you will be blessed and your life will be changed for the better after hearing one of the most impacting vocalists of the modern era!

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