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Christmas Vol. 1

2.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Audio CD, January 20, 2004
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Geoff Westen and his troop of Digital Activists take full aim at the Holidays, injecting their Rock Ambient sensibility into your favorite Christmas songs. Converting the DIGITAL ACTIVITY sound lab into santa's workshop, arranger/programmer Westen, has applied his digital touch to the Christmas songs he grew up with, turning them into extended soundscapes.

Each musical journey embarks down its traditional instrumental road before veering off into a highly adventurous rhythmic and melodic excursion. This 9-track instrumental collection takes you through seasonal standards with some rock, jazz, country, and even urban flourishes.

XMAS VOL. 1 can be played as a background that creates the perfect holiday atmosphere—for wrapping a few gifts or baking a batch of cookies. But if you are in the mood for some volume—by all means crank it up!

Either way, DIGITAL ACTIVITY's XMAS VOL. 1 will delight, with a new surprise around every musical twist and turn. This is the perfect backdrop for Christmas every year! These Xmas soundscapes defy categorization and take this traditional material to a whole new place. For more information on Xmas Vol.And for the true RA experience check out BIRTH by Digital Activity.

Review

DIGITAL ACTIVITY - Xmas Volume 1

Arranger/programmer Geoff Westen and his troop of Digital Activists apply a quirky sense of modern technology to a selection of Yuletide songs that have been a steadfast fixture through the ages. The result is a holiday record that brings these seasonal standards into the 21st Century.

Such tunes as Jingle Bells, Have Yourself a Merry Little Xmas, It's Beginning to Look like Xmas, Home for the Holidays, I'll Be Home for Xmas, Silent Night, Let It Snow, Have a Jolly Jolly Xmas, and Winter Wonderland are mutated from the versions you remember and converted into techno and electronic renditions that not only capture their holiday frivolity but also force-feed a dose of rock ambience to the tunes, periodically flavoring the treatments with jazz and even country embellishments.

The songs are presented in instrumental mode, without lyrics, but this does little to detract from their familiarity. Earnest efforts are employed to retain recognizability--despite the considerable alterations to which these songs are subjected.

Synthesizers and e-perc dominate the new modes, presenting the classics in a futurist manner that does little to violate their sentimental appeal. The delivery is carefully handled, and the execution will bring smiles to even the grumpiest scrooges.

This holiday novelty is thoroughly entertaining, following in a tradition pioneered by Mannheim Steamroller.

--Matt Howarth, Sonic Curiosity

Electronica Christmas heaven! Geoff Westen's DIGITAL ACTIVITY- Xmas Vol. 1 will have you skipping through your holiday preparations, two-step shuffling around the Christmas tree and bobbing your head on the way to the mall for that last very special Xmas gift.

Programmer Geoff Westen has taken time-honored holiday favorites and run them through his digital blender. One listen to Jingle Bells and that was (my) next Christmas album!

Cheerful, original arrangements filled with kooky, sophisticated riffs and unlimited virtual variations that keep coming as sure snow flurries to articulate 10 classic Christmas favorites. True to the tunes that youve heard over the years, yet filled with sound surprises that are sprinkled among lush and simple synth voices of every kind - singing Merry Christmas to us in an interesting new way.

Techno shuffly drive with a hint of hip-hop to Silent Night is as COOL as a snow filled winter sky. A sentimental strain of Ill Be Home For Christmas has lots of sub-rhythms and sub-melodies created by keyboard sounds of every variety. It's Beginning To Look A Lot Christmas is giddy with anticipation how can we wait to open those bright packages.

This is candy cane and eggnog music. Pure digital fun. Add a new variation to your holiday collection. It's hip and sentimental groundbreaking and nostalgic. Hey, Christmas is coming. Get this CD, and have yourself a Merry Moog Christmas! --Michelle Lambert, New Digital Reporter/CD Baby Talkback

Geoff Westen's Digital Activity - Xmas Vol. 1

When Christmas is taken over by the robots, only Digital Activitys Xmas Vol. 1 will survive. Running Jingle Bells, Home For the Holidays, and seven other favorites through the computer, it's Mannheim Steamroller for the Y2K. And my computer luvs it! --Polly Higgins, Tucson Citizen

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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Jingle Bells
  2. Have Yourself a Merry Little Xmas
  3. It's Beginning to Look Like Xmas
  4. Home for the Holidays
  5. I'll Be Home for Xmas
  6. Silent Night
  7. Let It Snow
  8. Have a Holly Jolly Xmas
  9. Winter Wonderland


Product details

  • Audio CD (January 20, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Disturbing Music
  • ASIN: B00011D186
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,551,561 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
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