Friday, September 21, 2012

Marius Noss Gundersen Merry Christmas To You PJRCD Records

You know what they say, "Christmas comes earlier every year." Considering retail Christmas technically starts soon after the Labor Day holiday I decided to take a look at some of the better Christmas releases that are currently floating around in cyber space.

Norwegian guitar virtuoso Marius Noss Gundersen has one of the very best in Merry Christmas To You. Gundersen takes the additional burden of wrapping said present by a carefully placed "To" and "From" on the back cover. An absolutely perfect mix of the more traditional folk songs of his native Norway to our Christmas classics, Gundersen delivers an acoustic masterpiece of superior quality. From the opening and slightly haunting Norwegian Folksong "Mitt Hjere Alltid Vanker" which is oddly reminiscent of "God Rest Ye Merry Gentleman" to the sweeping lyrical direction he takes with "White Christmas" there are simply no missed steps here. There are several popular acoustic Christmas recordings that will soon pop up either on line or if you are lucky enough to still have the traditional brick and mortar store but odds are you may have to do a little searching for this one. Well worth the effort!

"The Christmas Song" is a masterclass in technique while being as artistically as beautiful a version as one can hear of this timeless classic. "Kling no, Klokka" is another Norwegian folksong that is perfectly placed and adds a nice depth and texture to this pristine acoustic offering. A whimsical look at the children's favorite "Rudolph the Red-Nose Reindeer" brings just a hint of the country charm of perhaps a Chet Atkins.

Buying Christmas music is can be a bit taxing if you are unfamiliar with certain artists. Marius Noss Gundersen makes an easy. A sublime Christmas recording of favorites done in an organic acoustic setting and with grace, fluidity of motion and a deft touch that make this a particular favorite of mine. 

Tracks: Mitt Hjerte Alltid Vanker; Silent Night; Away In A Manager; White Christmas; The Christmas Song; Have Youself A Merry Little Christmas; Villancico de Navidad; Greensleeves; Carol of The Bells; Jingle Bells; Kling no, Kolka; Rudolph The Red Nose Reindeer; Christmas Time Is Here; Deilig er Jorden.

Solo guitar: Marius Noss Gundersen.