Patti LaBelle's This Christmas is a likeable collection of easygoing holiday confections. The songs prove quite endearing, but in some cases are marred by somewhat dated production. Some of these tunes, delivered in a "torch song" setting, allow LaBelle to truly shine, as in the glistening "I'm Christmasing With You" and "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve." Other highlights include the lovely "Country Christmas" (which was co-written by LaBelle), the soulful "Born in a Manger," and the tender, reggae-tinged "Wouldn't It Be Beautiful," easily one of the album's brightest moments. A couple of tracks, however, fall somewhat flat. "If Every Day Could Be Like Christmas" finds LaBelle in a zombie-like trance, and "Angel Man," tacked onto the 1995 reissue of the album, is an ear-piercing ballad. The album's sole traditional track is "O Holy Night," which LaBelle delivers with all of her trademark full-throttle gusto. Oftentimes, holiday albums such as this -- comprised of new, untraditional recordings -- are somewhat tepid, but that's thankfully not the case here. Despite a few dull moments and some lackluster production, this is quite an enjoyable and endearing holiday set, and will no doubt please the legendary singer's many fans. As a final note, the first version of the album, released in 1990, featured a different cover and included the lyrics (which weren't included in the 1995 version), but didn't include "Angel Man."
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AllMusic Review by Jose F. Promis