Gypsy Soul issue their second holiday album with Amazing Grace, taking much the same approach that they did with their first, Sacred. Once again, the emphasis is on traditional material, although the duo of singer Cilette Swann and multi-instrumentalist Roman Morykit this time mix in more recent compositions, notably "The Little Drummer Boy" and their own "The Snow, the Sea," inspired by the traditional Celtic song "The Sea" (and also featured on their album The Journey). Otherwise, these are carols and hymns far enough removed from copyright to be credited to "traditional," even when their authors are actually known. The title song, presented in both a full-length version and a radio edit, isn't precisely a holiday tune, and "Auld Lang Syne" takes the holiday spirit on to New Year's, but most of this is Christmas music, and as with Sacred, Swann and Morykit present it in attractive folk arrangements, although, as they did with "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen," they slip in a jazz reading of one song, in this case "Joy to the World," which is given a boogie-woogie treatment. Swann is more restrained than usual in her vocals, but the emotional quality of her interpretations is still their finest characteristic. This is seasonal music for fans of folk and acoustic new age music, who will be charmed by it and should also seek out Sacred.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann