Christmas In The Heart

  • Record Label: Sony
  • Release Date: Oct 13, 2009
Metascore
62

Generally favorable reviews - based on 17 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 17
  2. Negative: 1 out of 17
  1. Apart from the breakneck 'Must Be Santa,' which barrelhouses like a barroom, Dylan doesn't really reinterpret these songs as much as simply play them with his crackerjack road band, dropping in a little flair--restoring "we'll have to muddle through somehow" to 'Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,' singing the opening of 'O Come All Ye Faithful' in its original Latin--but never pushing tunes in unexpected directions.
  2. Uncut
    40
    Removed from the comfort of his own musical constructions, they often sound like a collection of rasps, croaks and burrs optimistically corralled in to what just might be words; Latin has never sounded more like a dead language than when Dylan sings in it on "O Come All Ye-Faithful". [Dec 2009, p. 87]
  3. Q Magazine
    40
    But, alternating between the laughable and listenable, it's safe to say there's never been anything quite like the sound of him jollily croaking his way through Her Comes Santa Claus or Hark The Herald Angles Sing. [Jan 2010, p. 119]
  4. Bob Dylan celebrates the Christmas hit parade the old-fashioned way: He plays it straight, as much as his pitted baritone allows, with a band that mixes David Hidalgo with R&B guitarist Phil Upchurch.
  5. It’s Bob Dylan’s Christmas gift to you, delivered with warmth from his heart, even if his tongue is in his cheek. Like eggnog, it’s something that will always go down well once a year, even if it is probably just the once.
  6. It's a decent album with good intentions.
  7. Dylan’s craggy voice isn’t really equipped for crooning, so the sometimes middle-brow orchestration and singing--particularly the use of backing choirs--sounds like a misguided attempt to sweeten a dish best served lightly salted.
User Score
7.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 43 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 5
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 5
  3. Negative: 2 out of 5
  1. TimK.
    Oct 15, 2009
    8
    I'm not much for Christmas albums, but this one stands out!
  2. Nov 1, 2013
    10
    The negative reviewers are missing the tongue-in-cheek attitude with which Dylan pulls off this, my favorite of all holiday albums. And if youThe negative reviewers are missing the tongue-in-cheek attitude with which Dylan pulls off this, my favorite of all holiday albums. And if you haven't seen the video for "Must Be Santa" check it out on youtube. Full Review »
  3. GregJ.
    Oct 18, 2009
    1
    Don't be fooled by the critics - this is the nadir of Dylan;s career. Truly awful!