ALBUM REVIEW: Kelly Clarkson’s ‘Wrapped in Red’

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The holiday music floodgates are officially opened with this seasonal offering from the inaugural “American Idol” victor. “Wrapped in Red’’ should prove a welcome gift to fans of the powerful pop star as Kelly Clarkson mixes classic carols and hymns with several originals co-written by the singer aiming to become perennials. The best of the new is a bouncy, cooing number called “Underneath the Tree,” tailor-made to soundtrack sleigh rides. The title track, a retro throwback to the Wall of Sound, is a sparkly treat, with a nice melancholy undertone familiar to anyone who knows the holiday blues. Among the well-known songs Clarkson plays it fairly straight. She starts gently on “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” before belting out the money notes.

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