To that end, the album contains lush and mesmerising interpretations of compositions like “Memories,” “I’ll Be Seeing You,” “Moonlight In Vermont” and “The Perfect Year.” And there are even some Christmas classics like “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)” and “Silent Night.” Created in Linehan’s home studio in Vermont, “This Time Of Year” features some esteemed collaborators. The album is produced by Andrew Koss (Linehan’s husband), music directed and arranged by Ryan Shirar, mixed by multi-Grammy winner Kevin Killen, and mastered by twelve-time Grammy winner Bob Ludwig. The title track was co-written by late Grammy Award nominee Felix McTeigue.
Musically and emotionally gratifying, with a strong catharsis component, Maxine Linehan's holiday-themed project captures so much of what comes along with Christmas—poignant memories, hope, frustrations, gratitude, awe and empathy. The eclectic set list honors her European roots and adopted homes (painting a lovely view of "Moonlight in Vermont" and the "Holiday Edition" revision of the Manhattan-centric comic "I Think of You" that appeared with its original lyric on her earlier-issued Beautiful Songs). Her singing throughout is rich and glorious, with consistently involved presence and pensive phrasing. The orchestral work (music director/arranger Ryan Shirar, who also plays keyboards) is elegant, especially the strings. This is a class act all the way.
- Talkin Broadway
Showbiz: Rosemary Clooney, Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye made 1954’s “White Christmas” in the fictional town of Pine Tree, so ever since, Vermont’s the ho-ho go-to for snow. Irish singer Maxine Linehan ice-skated to the Green Mountain State to record her Yuletide album, “This Time of Year.” . . . And director George Clooney’s “The Midnight Sky,” all about space, orbits just before Christmas. He’s also directing “The Tender Bar” starring Ben Affleck — who’s also directing “The Big Goodbye,” about the making of the film classic “Chinatown.” Soon, the only acting actor left in Hollywood could be Jeff Bridges.
- Page Six
When you hear a truly outstanding singer you never forget it. Cork-born singer Maxine Linehan is one such singer and her new album, This Time of Year, is perfectly crafted to address the unique complications of a 2020 style Christmas. First of all, it's a sonic marvel. The album features an impeccably chosen selection of holiday songs that are beautifully sung by Linehan, and the producing talents onboard include Andrew Koss, Ryan Shirar, Grammy Award nominee Felix McTeigue, Grammy winner Kevin Killen, and Grammy winner Bob Ludwig. These heavyweight contributions mean this is her most flawless record, but it's her vocals that really shine.
- Irish Central
Her heightened awareness that Christmas can be bittersweet or downright difficult for many has inspired This Time of Year, the Christmas album she’s just released; it’s an album that balances classics like 'The Perfect Year' from Sunset Boulevard, or 'Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas' with songs penned by Linehan and her husband, songs that serve up more nuance than the saccharine sentiments frequently found on Christmas albums.
- Irish Examiner
Maxine Linehan may not have been previously well known to Vermonters but that will change with the release of her holiday-themed album “This Time of Year.” This CD reveals a star vocalist with the appeal of Barbra Streisand and Judy Garland, whose program of songs lean heavily on a holiday experience that is neither a syrupy rehashing of over-recorded holiday pap, nor inappropriately jingly in this year of extreme political angst and pandemic concern.
- Rutland Herald
Maxine Linehan knows the holidays can be hard. On her new holiday album, This Time of Year, the Irish-born, Vermont-based performer seeks to acknowledge the emotional struggles that often coincide with the arrival of twinkle lights and Advent calendars. The record simultaneously longs for the past and strives for contentment in the now. That nostalgic state of being is perfectly encapsulated in the title track, a sparkling piano ballad laced with evocative strings and a mild country vibe.
- Seven Days Vermont