Annie Moses Band's "This Glorious Christmas": A Review
Posted November 18, 2008
by C.E. Moore
“This Glorious Christmas” is my introduction to the Annie Moses Band. Wow. Just…wow. They are absolutely amazing. This is the way sacred Christmas music is meant to be experienced. There’s just something about violins, cellos, and the feminine voice that just captures the spirit of the season.
First, let me explain a little about who the Annie Moses Band is. Composed of the Wolaver family—Bill (composer/arranger/pianist) and Robin (lyricist/vocalist) and their children, Annie, Alex, Benjamin, Gretchen, Camille, and Jeremiah—this group has wowed audiences and critics alike. Each of the members is specially trained in a specific instrument (some at Julliard) under renowned instructors, so they work well together as a unit. And in case you’re wondering why the band is named after one of the children, it’s not. It’s named for the kid’s great grandmother.
That being said, let’s talk about the music.
You know, I really just feel like “Wow” could sum up my feelings about the entire album, so I’ll keep things brief. The album starts out with the traditional English “Sussex Carol” and it is bright and vibrant as the violin, viola, cello, piano, harp, and other strings coalesce to create a beautiful sound. It will recall a simple time while reminding listeners that Christmas is a time to celebrate the advent of God on earth. “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” is the next track and here we are introduced to Annie Wolaver’s lithe vocals that blend delightfully with the family’s instruments as they build towards a crashing crescendo. Several offerings were penned by family matriarch Robin Wolaver—“Bethlehem, House Of Bread,” “Little Baby,” “When The Christmas Baby Cries,” and “Red, White, & Blue Christmas.” The best of these tracks is “Bethlehem, House Of Bread,” which is nimble and haunting. It is quite difficult to craft a modern Christmas song while infusing it with classic sensibilities. Robin Wolaver is a gifted lyricist in that sense. This is new and unfamiliar, yet it feels like I have known it all of my life. “Red, White, & Blue Christmas” is a bonus track that remembers those serving in America’s armed forces away from their friends and families during the holiday season.
In addition to the album comes a DVD of the band playing live. And let me tell you, seeing is believing. I am awed by this talented family and how they are using their gifts as a family to glorify God and edify believers and non-believers alike.
I cannot overstate how flat out amazing this album feels. If you’re only going to buy one Christmas album this season, make it the Annie Moses Band’s “This Glorious Christmas.” Listening to this offering will make the holidays glorious indeed.
This review has been reprinted on NRT with permission from The Christian Manifesto. Click here to visit TheChristianManifesto.com today!
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