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The Christmas Sessions

MercyMe

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Album Review

If you want to hear hard-rocking Christmas songs from a good Christian band, then your best bet is still Duvall's Oh Holy Night on Asian Man. But if you want something a bit slicker that still rocks pretty hard, this one is a good choice as well. Quite a few of these arrangements work really very nicely — the emotional hugeness of MercyMe's setting of "It Came Upon the Midnight Clear" is very effective, as is their chugging rendition of "Angels We Have Heard on High" (although rewriting the melody in the chorus wasn't the greatest idea). Singer Bart Millard can be a bit mannered in his delivery, though, and he sounds pretty silly trying to maintain his dignity while singing "pa-rump-a-pum-pum" on "Little Drummer Boy." Then there's the really ill-advised country setting of "Silent Night," for crying out loud. But they pull off the devilishly difficult trick of turning "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" into a U2-esque power ballad, and they do it with class. That's no mean feat. Not bad at all.

Biography

Formed: August, 1994 in Greenville, TX

Genre: Religious

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Although praise & worship band MercyMe was founded in 1994, vocalist Bart Millard says that the group's birth was a process God began in him during high school. Millard recalls, "My dad and my older brother were both football players. So naturally, that's what I wanted to do as well. But I broke both my ankles in a high school football game and that ended my career." Due to the injury, Millard was left with an elective class to fill and reluctantly joined the only available option: choir. With...
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The Christmas Sessions, MercyMe
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