This selection of Christmas music, however, I really REALLY like.
Tristin is a CCM artist and a worship leader for his church in Sherwood, Oregon. His sound leans toward Alt Folk, though he slides easily into Indie Rock when he's a mind to, and he obviously has a good ear for winning pop melodies. Often, CCM is either more Christian than Contemporary or more Contemporary than Christian, but Tristin's music on "Come Adore" maintains an equitable balance of the two.
"Come Adore" is a collection of Christmas songs, a few of which I recognize as earlier recordings and (I'm guessing) a few are likely newly recorded. The EP is available via Noise Trade as a free download (tips gratefully accepted). Preserving the original beauty of these mostly ancient carols, Tristin nonetheless makes them his own--sometimes with new lyrics, sometimes through combination with other songs or through fresh arrangements, and sometimes just through sheer presence and ability.
"Come Adore" opens strong with uptempo Indie Pop Rock takes on "Joy To The World" and "Angels We Have Heard On High"--the latter quite awesome and perfect for most any holiday playlist. A lot of people don't like "Little Drummer Boy" much, but there's a quality to this Alt Folkish version that makes it sound fresh and uplifting. "Come Adore Him"--a re-working of "O Come All Ye Faithful"--was written for last year's Crossridge Music EP, "Spirit of Christmas" and is filled with quiet beauty and grace. "Lord, Jesus I Love Thee" is a pretty straight forward worship song, delivered as a Folk Pop ballad. Not my personal cup of tea, but there's no denying its very pretty. The tempo picks up again for "O Come O Come Emmanuel". And the set closes with "Auld Lang Syne" wherein (intentionally or not) Tristin's vocals remind me of some of Art Garfunkle's best. It leaves you wanting more and that says as much as anything else I could say.