Christmas by Castle Island Hymns

[Purchase at BandCamp]

What do I think of this new Christmas/Advent hymns album by Boston City Life musicians Bobby Krier, Justin Ruddy and ensemble?  Nom Nom Nom!

The arrangements are super interesting to listen too, the production work includes stellar contributions from friends Gloria Notes and Magik Magik among others, and most of these can be worked out in a congregational setting. There’s a great mix of traditional carols ancient and new and even brand new compositions.  Musically it is by far the most quirky and poppy of the “re:hymned” albums I have listened too, which makes it a refreshing balance to the indie-folk that currently dominates the genre.

Lyrical Observations:

Read the hymn “Jesus Came, The Heaven’s Adoring” that is the basis for track one.  It is one of the few xmas texts that allows us to sing into the sorrow that many of us feel during this time of year and find Jesus at the bottom of it.  Bobby has done a great job with the music for this text.

Give Emmanuel Come by Justin Ruddy a good listen.  These are original lyrics that do a great job of walking us through the scene from Luke 2.  I love how he ties the angels long wait for Christ’s birth with our continued waiting for Christ to return and make all things right.

*Thanks to Bobby and crew for contributing to our latest compilation with their track – Satisfied by Grace.


‘Christmas’ Track List:

01 Alleluia (leadsheet)
(based in the hymn “Jesus Came the Heaven’s Adoring)
02 Hark The Herald Angels Sing
03 Word Become Flesh
(words and music: Justin Ruddy)
04 Gloria
Text by Caelius Sedulius 5th century
(refrain) Bobby Krier | Music: Bobby Krier
05 O Come All Ye Faithful
06 Emmanuel Has Come
(words and music: Justin Ruddy)
07 I Heard The Bells
(words: Henry Longfellow | Music: Kevin Burtram)
08 Christmas Night
(words: Traditional |Music & refrain: Bobby Krier)
09 O Come, O Come Emmanuel
10 Silent Night

2 thoughts on “Christmas by Castle Island Hymns

Add yours

Leave a Reply to Lucas Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

Up ↑