for KING & COUNTRY have praised the "beautiful encouragement" they've received from Dolly Parton.

Brothers Joel and Luke Smallbone are fearing up to release a festive album, 'A Drummer Boy Christmas', later this month and though their 'God Only Knows' collaborator will also bring out a record, 'A Holly Dolly Christmas', at the same time, she's been nothing but supportive.

They said: "To be put in the same conversation as dear Dolly Parton, on any level, be it a collaboration or a Christmas album, is a true honour.

"We’re proud that we’ll both be contributing to people’s 2020 Christmas experience and offering a bit of hope.

"Her belief in us as a band and what she offered to 'God Only Knows' by saying - and I quote - 'I believe this is one of the most inspirational songs I’ve heard' was a beautiful encouragement as writers and musicians.. and we’ve take that confidence into our Christmas project."

The band's album has been in the pipeline for several years but they're delighted to be bringing it out in time for a Christmas they hope will be "the most joyous reprieve" following a year of turmoil with the coronavirus crisis.

They added: "This album has really been eight years in the making. Christmas music was really written into the DNA of the band from the beginning.

"So to take all of the history and our love of Christmas songs (singles and EPS) and to pour it into a full-length album, 45 minutes of music.

"After the year the world has faced.. We believe Christmas 2020 will be the most joyous reprieve and hope-filled Christmas we’ve ever experienced. So we are thrilled, to say the least, that this project has finally come into existence.

Joel and Luke have always been captivated by the "miracle of Christmas" and hope to share their enthusiasm for the holiday season with their fans.

They said: "The miracle of Christmas captivated us long ago and has been laced into the DNA of the band. We felt it was the imperfectly perfect time for us to do our small part in telling the story of the redemption that Christmas offers to all of us.

"So, bake those chocolate chip cookies, make a little hot chocolate, strike up that cozy fire, and let us take you on a 44 minute and 49 second musical Christmas journey to celebrate the greatest story the world has ever known!”

'A Drummer Boy Christmas' will be released on 30 October.