Fun, charming holiday release
Reviewed December 2009
Tidings of Comfort and Joy
By The Winters
To hear sound clips or learn more about this release, Turbula recommends viewing the artist's Web page.
Lindsey Yung, the highly-regarded San Diego-based singer-songwriter, has joined forced with multi-instrumentalist Blake Darling to form The Winters and released a four-song holiday EP that is utterly different from Yung's two solo CDs, and as charming as it is different.
While her solo discs focused on Yung's keyboards as much as her voice she breaks with singer-songwriter tradition by accomapnying herself on keys instead of guitar this outing finds her high, pure voice surrounded by a guitar-based full band sound, and more folk-oriented than the pop and alternative arrangements on her previous releases.
Darling is a superb guitarist, and also plays drums and keyboards. He and Yung's arrangements are full, and their use of cello and bowed bass on "In the Bleak Midwinter" adds a plaintive tone to balance Yung's soaring vocal. Their takes on holiday warhorses "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" and "What Child Is This?" are different: "What Child Is This" is turned into a march, while "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" into almost an alt-bluegrass tune. And "Let It Snow" gets a Polynesian twist courtesy of Yung's ukelele.
All in all, a delightful Christmas release and as a teaser for The Winters' upcoming full-length release next year, a nice bit of marketing.
Review by Jim Trageser. Jim is a writer and editor living in Escondido, Calif., and was a contributor to the "Grove Press Guide to Blues on CD" (1993) and "The Routledge Encyclopedia of the Blues" (2005).