The First Metal Noel

The Big Holiday Season is almost upon us — but few radio stations will be blaring songs about Hanukkah non-stop. Just think, another onslaught of Andy Williams, Burl Ives, and plenty of other ditties driving many of us into Cheer Overload and paganism. Not that I'm a Scrooge, but surely there must be some alternative to the same humdrum "classics." Salvation comes from 'round here, via Florida's prog-metal Savatage, from whose members, in collaboration with their producer Paul O'Neill, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra was born. The 60-plus piece T-S Orchestra performs original Christmas-themed material, presenting narratives celebrating the spiritual meaning of Christmas (without going all Christian-centric on us), combining the Beethoven-dusted power-pop of Electric Light Orchestra and the thoughtful metal of Queensryche. But they're not going to freeze-out the more tradition-minded Holiday music — TSO sprinkles some standards ("O Holy Night," "The First Noel") into their repertoire. Not your (grand)parents' Xmas tunes, for sure.

Electroshock those holiday blues away with Trans-Siberian Orchestra at 8 p.m. Monday, November 7, at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, 1 Seminole Blvd., Hollywood. Tickets cost between $36 and $56. Call 954-523-3309.

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