Angelis

Angelis

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When Charlotte Church, the child with the voice of an angel, became an adult preferring pop music, there was a gap in the market for a group of children singing with clear, angelic voices, a gap that was filled by the production of three boys and three girls, collectively known as Angelis. Selected from choirs around the U.K. including the Royal Scottish National Opera and the New London Children's Choir, Moray West, Joe Martin, Sam Adams Nye, Natalie Grace Chua, Camilla Seale, and Amy Dow, all aged between 11 and 14, were brought together by Simon Cowell, a man who rarely missed an opportunity to fill any gaps in the market and handed to producer Steve Mac, known for his work with Il Divo and Westlife. With both eyes open to the time of year for the release and the once-per-year album purchases of many people, they covered religious songs "Pie Jesu," "Silent Night," "Morning Has Broken," and "O Holy Night" quite well: after hearing them in church, one might want to hear them sung beautifully at home. "Somewhere over the Rainbow" is also here, done more in the style of Eva Cassidy than Judy Garland, along with Enya's "May It Be" and Sarah McLachlan's "Angel," but however beautifully sung, there is only one pace throughout -- slow -- and after 11 songs and nearly 40 minutes, it leaves you yearning for something, anything, a little livelier with slightly more oomph. Angelis charted at number two on November 18, 2006 behind Jamiroquai's hits collection, during one of the busiest-ever weeks of chart action with seven new entries in the Top Ten that week. One week later, the similar but slightly older, all-female quartet All Angels arrived and there was an opportunity to compare two sets of young angelic voices. As children, Angelis were obviously cuter, but the maturity of All Angels shone through clearly. One week later still and the even more mature Il Divo released their next album. It would be harder than ever to pick the one album only to buy for Christmas 2006.

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