Various Artists

Mas! A Caribbean Christmas Party

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Christmas releases tend to sound the same, mainly because there are only so many ways to sing shopworn carols and holiday tunes. But here's an actual Christmas alternative: a nine-track CD with Caribbean artists putting their spin on the season. El Gran Combo, Joseph Spence, Lord Nelson, and Machel don't distort the traditional meaning of the lyrics, but they certainly bring a fresh quality to their holiday numbers while performing much more upbeat versions than you'll hear on many rote Christmas discs.

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