But to make the 18-track Christmas, Mulder had to travel to London, England, where housing his Fazioli and the London Symphony Orchestra required the use of a large room. Fortunately world-famous AIR Studios, founded in 1965 by Beatles producer Sir George Martin, had relocated to a large historic brownstone, designed and built in 1880 by Victorian architect Alfred Waterhouse, and previously home to the Lyndhurst Road Congregational Church.
The result is a rich sonic treat—the recording feels like a live concert. Besides familiar carols like “O Come All Ye Faithful,” “Away In A Manger” and “O Holy Night,” the composer offers three original instrumentals: “Prince of Peace,” a gently lilting piano tune; “The Birthday of a King,” featuring a heartfelt violin solo from LSO leader Carmine Lauri; and “Mary's Lullaby,” interpreted softly by harp and alto flute. There is just one vocal track on the CD, but it's a standout: “A Choir Of A Thousand Angels” is sung by Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli . . . who, despite singing in Rome, manages to feel right at home on this easy-listening London session. Christmas will fit in with any holiday playlist, never once taking you out of the spirit of the season.