26 September 2023

Only Santa Knows

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Reviewed by Ian Phillips.

By Delta Goodrem, Sony Music 2020.

Yes we’re at that time of the year again but I suspect that this year the celebrations will be all the sweeter because we know that 2020 is nearly over.

My inbox is full of Christmas albums and, as I only review one, I’ve decided that it may as well be from an Australian artist. Delta Goodrem was first cab off the rank.

All the usual tracks are here, Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer, Little Drummer Boy, White Christmas, Santa’s coming To Town, Deck The Halls… etc etc, and Goodrem’s versions are better than those on many corresponding albums.

She really does have a magnificent voice and her impressive vocal range shines through in tracks, including the title track Only Santa Knows.

The album opens with an a cappella version of Carol Of The bells which is excellent.

I don’t know the names of the other singers on the album but they are extremely talented and their abilities go a long way to making this album the success I’m sure it will turn out to be.

Delta rocks up Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer but it ends on a traditional note.

She does include the rockabilly Christmas classic Rockin’ Round The Christmas Tree that’s meant to be rock’n’roll and Santa Claus is Coming To Town has been given an up tempo groove but otherwise most of the other tracks are fairly traditional.

There are however a couple of treats that close the album out, and a track I hadn’t heard before called River.

She does a delightful duet of Silent Night with the late great Gurrumul, it is so beautiful that it brought tears to my eyes.

The final track is a duet with Olivia Newton-John doing Merry Christmas To You and they leave us with messages of love and happiness for the festive season.

Let’s all hope that the vaccine arrives early and it lives up to the expectations. In the meantime we’ll have to maintain a COVID-Safe Christmas.

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