Live: Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Houston
Going to see the Trans-Siberian Orchestra at the Toyota Center in Houston has become a joyous family tradition. It’s virtually the same show every year, but it doesn’t matter because it’s great ever year. Led by lead guitarist extraordinaire Al Pitrelli, this band of incredible musicians and vocalists brings the power and the glory and makes it all look easy during a more than 2-1/2 hour action-packed performance.
TSO’s groundbreaking album, Christmas Eve and Other Stories, featuring Phillip Brandon’s heartfelt and powerful narration, made up the first part of the show. Vocalist Andrew Ross delivered a stunning version of “An Angel Came Down,” followed by Pitrelli’s soulful guitar solo on “O Holy Night.” Vocalist Tru Collins belted out a powerful first-time vocal on “The Prince of Peace.” The best song of the night, the instrumental “Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24,” just about brought the house down and vocalist Bart Shatto put on the “bum” costume for another stunning version of the acoustic “Old City Bar.” 30 Days Out favorite Tommy Farese was stellar on “Good King Joy,” “Ornament,” and the show stopper “This Christmas Day.” The second half of the show featured material from their other albums Christmas Attic, The Lost Christmas Eve and their latest, Night Castle. The highlights included a rockin’ “Wizards in Winter” and vocalist Kristin Gorman doing pretty much anything.
As I stated before, the musicians are among the best in the world, and they all have great hair. Guitarist Angus Clark (my daughter’s favorite) is a true rock God. Keyboardist Jane Mangini is as good as it gets and how super-talented violinist Caitlin Moe is able to play the way she does while running all over the stage and the arena is beyond comprehension.
If you haven’t had the chance to see this band, I would highly recommend you do so before the Christmas season is over. You too might start a family tradition.
“Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24” by Trans-Siberian Orchestra