Alright, men, it just might be time to take out the iron jock again—yep, even during the holiday season. Karling Abbeygate has one of those babydoll voices that get to you in that special kind of way, know what I mean? And the torrid liner-photo glance she's casting your way while clutching that disappearing red camisole to her heaving breast doesn't exactly bring out thoughts of Bing Crosby and Lawrence Welk…more like Loni Sanders and Marilyn Chambers. Christmas with Karling is the kinda disc you save for a boozy party, not for the kiddies' delectations, and, surprisingly, over half the songs are originals by the winsome wench herself.
I mean, dig the Chuck Berry rockin' rollin' Christmas Party grooving between surf music and chocklit shoppe jukebox refrains with Abbeygate pealing out ranchero trills and whoops. Then there's the slo-dancin' Angel Tears getting' ya all warm and mushy, followed by the same in a more upbeat tempo in My Honey's Coming Home for Christmas, a sassy-happy tribute to distanced love closing the gap. Ah, but then there's her and the bands re-do's of trad songs like The First Noel, here with swinging boss beat. 'N how about that country twangin' Deck the Halls? Bertram, git me my lasso, we're heading out for the North 40!! Her take on Silent Night, however, is reverential and nicely subdued. There are some songs you just can't mutate, and that's one of them, very prettily rendered…and I mean really prettily, down home with stars shining. And dig this, she and da boyz recorded the whole thing live with minimal overdubs in her home studio. That's the element I couldn't quite put my finger on while listening, that ambient immediacy. Pass the eggnog, lower the lights, put another log on the fire, and turn that CD player UP!
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2011, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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