HomeMusic“Cozy Christmas” by Haley Dreis

    “Cozy Christmas” by Haley Dreis

    What better way to get into the Christmas spirit than with a new spin on a ton of old Christmas classics, courtesy of an up-and-coming indie artist with an incredible voice and ear for incredible arrangements? That’s what Haley Dreis is hoping to deliver with her latest LP, Cozy Christmas, and after hearing it, that’s what listeners are going to get! Coming in at eleven tracks, with some originals and mixed among covers of some of the most iconic Christmas songs available, Cozy Christmas does its name proud — warm arrangements of piano, guitar, and vocals feel right at home around the Christmas tree, bundled up with blankets and a nice mug of hot cocoa.


    While there are plenty of fan favorites mixed into Cozy Christmas, with your classics “Jingle Bells” and “Deck The Halls” thrown into the mix, Haley Dreis isn’t afraid to get personal with the idea of what a Christmas album can be. She includes three of her own original songs, and all of them are perfect amongst legendary Christmas titles — the first, “I Can’t Wait For Christmas,” is an upbeat, catchy acoustic guitar and piano-led piece about the growing anticipation for the holiday season.

    The trademarks of pumpkin spice lattes, cider, sparkling lights, and warm fires are all there; it’s a great original piece to place right before “Deck The Halls.” Dreis’ next original track, “Christmas Cheer,” follows the sleeper hit “White Christmas” (heard of it?) with gusto! It’s a fun, relatable track for the Christmas-holic in all of us. The melody is well-done, with bells accenting the song both in jingle-jangling as well as melody. The third Dreis original is “Holidays Are Hard,” which details the complicated relationship of holidays when you’ve lost a loved one. It hits hard and stands out as perhaps the strongest of the three original tracks.

    Sprinkled among the originals are other tracks such as “Silent Night,” which is given a beautiful rendition over a warm, gentle guitar, and Joni Mitchell’s “River,” which feels at home on just about any Christmas album. There are also covers of “Winter Wonderland,” “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas,” and “Auld Lang Syne,” which boldly and wisely closes the record out. There’s not a song choice out of place on the project, and the sequencing of covers against originals feels inspired — there’s a great pacing to Cozy Christmas that earns its place amongst the more mainstream, label-made Christmas records, and there’s no reason why Dreis shouldn’t be selling this to Starbucks for seven figures!

    It’s great holiday music that could arguably inspire fans to get in the Christmas spirit year-round, and more than that it’s a perfect talent showcase for what Haley Dreis is capable of. For those hoping to revisit an old Christmas favorite or put on a new artist and find a new Christmas original, Cozy Christmas does it all! It’s exactly as it says it is, cozy — and in the dead of Winter, what else is better than that?

    Trace Whittaker

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