WEST OF EDEN – A Celtic Christmas (Zebra Art Records ZAR852)

Ah, a hearty goodwill to all men (and women)…and spreading the word with this gently evocative offering are Sweden’s Celtic influenced West Of Eden. Now, without wishing to detract from the skills of the band as a whole (they exploit fiddle, guitars, accordion, bouzouki, percussion and piano extremely well) the album relies predominantly on the strength of Martin Schaub’s production. By combining elements of ‘folk’ with a modern twist the band are not averse to encompass tastes that appeal to a wider demographic and in this instance they are joined by the Haga Motet Choir on several ‘live’ tracks with suitably seasonal fare including “The Wexford Carol”, “In The Bleak Midwinter” and a buoyant “I Saw Three Ships”. It will come as no surprise to those that have read my ramblings before that this is my favourite time of the year and having become something of an avid hoarder of Christmas albums this recording will nestle nicely in my collection.

PETE FYFE

Artist website: www.westofeden.com


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