I exist to help the modern Christmas mixer populate or finish a Christmas mix. That is largely the goal when I set out looking for something to write about. However, every so often a record crosses my path, that might not be the kind of thing you would chop up or extract a track or two from. Duluth, Minnesota’s Ingeborg von Agassiz has put together one of these records, one that feels like each song needs the song before it as much as the one that follows to feel truly at home. The songs are connected through their sparse instrumentation, a base of electronic tones and beats with a few choice colors to compliment her wonderful voice. But don’t let you think that every song sounds the same; There are so many unique moments – From the heartbeat rhythm of “St. Children’s Choir,” to the suggestion of a music box on gorgeous “We Are Not Tired,” these arrangement choices are just so spot on. In a genre that often rewards the “more is better” ethos, it is downright refreshing to hear something so complete, yet with so much open space. I recommend a full listen, headphones on, perhaps while walking through a city if you are so fortunate.
Bottom Line: A truly original Christmas record that is most certainly worth your time.