Pentatonix dropped their latest album Holidays Around the World, which promises an eclectic collection of holiday songs with a few original tunes mixed in with the classics. The flagship song of the album, “Prayers for this World,” has us excited to hear what the #1 a cappella group has in store.
Perhaps it’s a sign of the times that even the perpetually cheerful Pentatonix has gone darker, both visually and lyrically, in 2022. Standing in a dim room, with the only light seeming to come from underwater, the music video immediately evokes a claustrophobic feeling. Meanwhile, the lyrics speak of a sense of uncertainty for the future, which has become culturally pervasive since the pandemic.
The chorus brings these sentiments to a head, as Pentatonix suggests that prayers for the world are what is needed most:
Prayers for this world
Bring peace to its doors
Bring hope to its shores
We’ve got to change it
Prayers for this world
Bring wind to its sails
It’s gone off the rails
We’ve got to save it
“Prayers for this World” was the perfect song to lead the album, as it can speak to both religious and secular audiences. It doesn’t really feel like a holiday song and the vocal arrangement is far more expansive than Pentatonix’s usual holiday fare. This crossover hit would be as at home on a holiday playlist as it would on a secular radio station.
Member Kevin Olusola, who co-wrote “Prayers for this World” with legendary hitmaker Dianne Warren, said of the song in an interview with People:
“This is an anchor for the album, because there’s so much going on in our world today, and it’s almost like a collective prayer with all these different artists from the international community that all want hope, love, and light and peace for our world today.”
Pentatonix fills out the album with some Christmas classics, like “Hark, the Herald Angels Sing,” “Last Christmas,” “Jingle Bells,” and more. Pentatonix gives each song their usual treatment to make even the most well known tunes sound unique and new. For an example, take a listen to their sneak peek of “Joy to the World,” which has been so completely reimagined that we almost didn’t recognize it.
Holidays Around the World also has a few brand new holiday songs to add to our playlists, including a collaboration with Meghan Trainor called “Kid on Christmas.” All said and done, Pentatonix has produced another Christmas album that we fully expect to stand the test of time.