Though it’s about as far from alternative Christmas fare as you can get, Michelle Beauchesne’s ode to the season is no doubt a dazzler. Recorded, mixed, and produced right here in Santa Barbara, the 16-track collection of holiday standards is replete with lush cello compositions that don’t overwhelm. While harmonics filter in and out throughout the pieces, much of Cello Christmas is composed of Beauchesne solo. While the album incorporates must-haves like “Silent Night” and “The First Noel,” it also digs a little deeper-and goes a little darker-on compositions like “The Coventry Carol.” In between, classic pieces like “O Come All Ye Faithful” and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” shimmer with rich, warm tones and soothing tempos. In essence, it’s a perfect, subtle, and yet blatantly seasonal collection that sounds timeless even on first listen. You can pick up the album online at iTunes or Beauchesne’s own website.


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