Holiday discs 2012: Rod Stewart's Merry Christmas, Baby

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Rod Stewart
Merry Christmas, Baby

From the sound of his almost-shot voice, Rod Stewart has spent most of his 67 years on Earth washing down filterless Dunhills with Chivas Regal Royal Salute and unwashed pea gravel. As ravaged as his pipes are, Merry Christmas, Baby is, predictably, slicker than Xmas goose shit, which is to say the approach is more schlocky American Songbook than “Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?” There’s some welcome R&B punch to “Red-Suited Super Man”, but most of the standards are drowned in sugar-soaked strings, making tracks like “Silver Bells” about as much fun as getting your stomach pumped after servicing a gang of sailors in a San Diego gay bar.

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Calm down, what did you expect from David Foster?
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