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“This Christmas” by The Tribe Band

The Tribe Band aren’t pulling any instrumental punches in the lead-in to the chorus of their new single “This Christmas,” as every portion of the mix is coming to us glowing with a passion that can burn as bright outside of the Christmas season as it does during. Their emotional investment in the music, and more pressingly, the harmonies that drive its most powerful moments home, is evident from the moment that they start to sing to the very second the song disappears into the ethers, but as potent as the star singers in this performance are, their talent is but one component in this excellent new release. 

The melodic parts in this track are in some respects just as expressive an element as any of the lyrics are, and I like that The Tribe Band was able to spread out the catharsis across the entire sonic spectrum here rather than focusing all of the energy towards making the vocals stand out. These guys just don’t need a lot of extra help in christening a song with their uniquely endearing voices, and in this instance, they were especially smart to share the spotlight with their bandmates. As anyone who has heard the song before knows, this is an epic composition that justly receives an epic treatment from a group more than capable of giving it an inspired look. 

I thought that the percussion had a little more oomph than it needed in my early listening sessions with “This Christmas,” but after a closer inspection, I think I can understand what the band was going for here. Were the beat not quite as prominent as it is in this song, I’m not positive that the flow of the low-end tones from the bass would be as smooth as it is – particularly concerning the instrumental ascent in the chorus. There’s a meticulous hand behind this arrangement, and if I had to guess whose it is, I’d have to say it’s probably coming from the collective as opposed to a single member. 

It would be nice to hear this group live at some point, with or without the special guests, and with this number included on the setlist, I think they could give a very exciting holiday performance. Honestly, based on how well this does with seasonal music’s core fans, I would even suggest The Tribe Band consider recording a complete album of holiday covers because they really do an exceptional job with the material here.  

The Tribe Band is back with what amounts to a must-listen ballad for holiday music buffs in “This Christmas,” and if you haven’t already given this single a spin, it’s definitely not too late in the season to put it on the stereo. I first got acquainted with this group not too long ago, and obviously with the likes of Loggins and McDonald many years in the past, and I’m all the more curious to hear some more of their work after getting hooked on the yuletide harmony in this track. They’ve got something special going for them, and this song only further solidifies their respectable status in the industry today. 

Mindy McCall



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