Destiny's Child's holiday album, 8 Days of Christmas, is pretty much what you'd expect -- divided equally between strained hip-hop-soul and smooth adult contemporary pop directly targeted at a crossover paradise. Since holiday albums have to have a hook, or at least one novelty to draw in an audience, there's the title track that recasts "12 Days of Christmas" as a modern, commercialistic, sub-hip-hop rant. Things get better than that, as the tailor-made "Winter Paradise" works much better, as does "A 'DC' Christmas Medley," which may be a little formulaic, but appealing. Then, there's a huge stretch that features the individual members of Destiny's Child singing a carol apiece (plus "Little Drummer Boy," which features Solange, who isn't in the group) -- good way of prepping for the inevitable solo careers, I suppose. Then, the album pretty much runs out with ballads and songs that emphasize some of the more irritating aspects of Destiny's Child (the skittering verses of "Spread a Little Love on Christmas Day," for instance, complete with its chorus of "I got your back on Christmas Day"), as well as their crossover attempts, including a version of "Opera of the Bells." So, yes, this is uneven, as much as any holiday album is uneven, and even if it lacks anything distinctive, it's still Destiny enough to please many hardcore fans. Ultimately, it doesn't really feel all that distinctive one way or another, which may be worse than being really bad or really great.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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