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Patti LaBelle may have abandoned her wild-haired “Lady Marmalade” brashness when she hit the back end of middle age, but given the right material the aging diva can still climb all over a song with some of the best pipes in the biz. Sadly, the new This Christmas, a rushed-sounding production with little flair and zero originality, is chock-full of all the wrong material. The best offering is the titular tune, a poppy, synth-driven love song with a catchy enough chorus to become a staple on R&B radio holiday playlists. The problem, however, is that too many of the remaining 11 songs sound just like it, hindering any further enjoyment of the only solid track. The thought of LaBelle taking a crack at “O Holy Night” is promising, but with yet another lame midtempo beat and unforgiving cheesemaster keyboards backing her up, all potential power is drained from the classic. This Christmas shouldn’t have been such a disaster: Stripped down to the simple combo of piano and LaBelle, many of these cuts could have been keepers. —Sean Adeste Fidaly