'A Very She & Him Christmas' was released on October 24th, 2011.
Seeing as it's only one week until Christmas, we thought this week's album of the week could be a celebration of one of our favourite festive albums of all time: A Very She & Him Christmas. Released via Merge Records, this collection of remarkable covers has been a seasonal staple for almost ten years.
A Very She & Him Christmas
She & Him are an indie duo composed of New Girl star Zooey Deschanel and folk genius M. Ward. While they do have a back catalogue of original songs, it's always been their covers of classics which have touched us the most; so it's no wonder we hold their first Christmas album to such high esteem.
Included on the record are sensational reworkings of Baby, It's Cold Outside, Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas and The Christmas Song among others, as well as Bing Crosby's I'll Be Home for Christmas which featured in a Christmas episode of New Girl.
Critics were surprisingly lukewarm in their response to the record; while it's true there was nothing especially groundbreaking about A Very She & Him Christmas, it felt perfectly balanced between the era of Christmas classics and modern day festivity. Songs that previously felt tired and overdone, suddenly felt fresh and new, but still with a respectable simplicity, that admittedly some may have called "safe".
She & Him released a second Christmas album entitled Christmas Party in 2016 featuring new versions of All I Want for Christmas Is You, Let It Snow and Winter Wonderland. We wouldn't have necessarily called it an improvement, but it certainly makes for a wonderful companion record equally worthy of repeated listens throughout December.
The best Christmas albums will likely always feature classic covers - there are very few if any records of festive originals that have emerged in recent years that have been memorable. In fact, they've been barely a blip on the radar among those all-time standards. Thus, we'll always appreciate a collection of fresh reworkings, especially when they're done with such elegance as She & Him.