Houston Concert Watch 12/19: Trans-Siberian Orchestra and More

This is just a small, small part of the TSO experience.
This is just a small, small part of the TSO experience. Photo by Eric Sauseda
This week is capped off by Christmas, which means after this we’ll be back to regularly scheduled, holiday-free concert options, for better or worse. This week we have no choice but to lean into the phenomena of holiday concerts, as this is another week packed to the gills with them. If you haven’t broken out the red and green outfits or your ugly sweaters yet, you’ve still got a few shots left to do so.

Pick of the Week: Trans-Siberian Orchestra
12/21 - Toyota Center

I’ll confess: I saw Trans-Siberian Orchestra last year and my eyes are just now getting back to normal. If you’re in the first ten or so rows, the show can be overwhelming; enjoyable, yes, but there’s just so much of it, from the lights to lasers to the number of band members to moving parts in general. TSO has their gimmick and they do it well, and if the only thing you think the holidays need more of is guitar solos you won’t be disappointed.

Best of the Rest:
12/20 - Rudyard’s

A long time ago, in a mystical land known as England, a man was born on Christmas Eve. His name was Lemmy, and the only reason he was born on Christmas Eve is because had he been born on Christmas he would have been too powerful. Alas, the Motorhead bassist is no longer with us, but this time of year belongs to Lemmy just as much as anyone and bands like Doomstress and Horehound will be on hand to celebrate his legacy.
Il Divo
12/20 - Smart Financial Center

Is Il Divo’s most recent work, Timeless, the only album to feature versions of songs written by both Adele and Charlie Chaplin? Perhaps. If you’re looking for something with less holiday flare but still worth dressing up for — and without feeling like a dusty PBS special — Il Divo is down in Sugar Land making magic with their voices. Read their surprisingly technical Wikipedia article so you can sound like the smartest person in the car on the way to the show.
Robert Earl Keen
12/21 - House of Blues

If you’re a Robert Earl Keen fan, you’ve probably had the 21st circled on your calendar for a hot minute now. It feels like he announced his Cosmic Cowboy Christmas tour dates ages ago, and at least it’s finally here. Appreciate the relative intimacy you’re going to get with this show at the House of Blues, because the next time Keen performs in Houston it’ll be at the NRG Center as part of the big George Strait show.
12/25 - Fitzgerald’s

You never know what will become tradition, and you never know when tradition will become the past. For the last time, 30footFALL will be taking the stage at Fitz on Christmas, which more than anything else makes the end of Fitz feel real. It’s the end of an era, and one of the final shows taking place at Fitz and maybe the best reason that exists to ditch your family early. If you’re still on visiting terms with the venue, you don’t want to miss this.

Bonus Streaming Option:
Springsteen on Broadway

No road trips this week as Christmas is pretty slow around the state, so instead I recommend getting cozy in your living room, clicking over to Netflix and experiencing their new special documenting Springsteen’s recent run of dates on Broadway. It’s both a masterful deconstruction on one of the few artists in music whose mythology is still fascinating while also being a testament to his incredible songwriting abilities. Maybe pack some tissues because there are some real tearjerker moments in this one.
KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Cory Garcia is a Contributing Editor for the Houston Press. He once won an award for his writing, but he doesn't like to brag about it. If you're reading this sentence, odds are good it's because he wrote a concert review you don't like or he wanted to talk pro wrestling.
Contact: Cory Garcia