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Trans-Siberian Orchestra - The Lost Christmas Eve CD (album) cover

THE LOST CHRISTMAS EVE

Trans-Siberian Orchestra

Crossover Prog


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bud@ranger1.o
4 stars This is an excellent album with its own originality definetly. Just like other TSO albums, you wouldn't think distorted, screaming and leading guitars would go well with the topic of CHRISTMAS. The melodies on this cd are very good especially the instrumentals such as christmas jam and wizards in winter. They do a good job of obtaining the heaviness and power without staining the holiday feeling.

However, there is a reason i give this four stars instead of five. The vocals. I'm not saying Robert evan, Michael Lanning and all the other countless singers they use aren't good singers, just that they're not the best singers for this type of music i think. The tone and style they sing the lyrics in makes them sound very cheap and cheesy. This only goes for a small number of the songs howeve(such as What is Christmas?). Also, some of the songs seem somewhat dark and creepy. Again, thats only for a few songs on the album. Thats cool if you're into that sort of thing. I like it personnally but when i want to listen to christmas music i want to feel happy.

Still, i highly recommend this cd to anybody. It IS that good i think. All the instrumental work is perfect. Beautiful piano, powerful guitar and um.... ok vocals.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#33209)
Posted Sunday, November 14, 2004 | Review Permalink
semismart
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars When you get a little older and you've seen your share of Christmas's, Christmas music gets a little....you know.......redundant? That's why I haven't bought any new Christmas music in years.....that is until tonight, when I attended a Trans Siberian Orchestra concert and was overwhelmed with the performance, but that's another review.

The Lost Christmas Eve is the third alleged Christmas album that TSO has released. I say alleged because any similarity to conventional Christmas music is strictly accidental and that's fine with me. I guess you could say it's Christmas music for people that can't stand Christmas music anymore.

True, we have a couple requisite Christmas standards like "What Child is This" performed in TSO's inimitable Classical Orchestral Heavy Metal style but for the preponderance of the twenty-three tracks the only connection to Xmas is the word Christmas Eve.

The Lost Christmas Eve is (surprise) a concept album not unlike TSO's masterpiece Beethoven's Last Night or for that matter Savatage's Dead Winter Dead or any of their other seven rock opera style concept albums

For those not familiar with the Savatage connection let my edify you. No less than three members and former members of that tradition rich band (Jon Olivos, Al Petrelli and Johnny Lee Middleton) performed on this album with Olivos, in conjunction with Savatage producer extraordinaire Paul O'neil and Robert Kinkel, being a member of the creative triumvirate as well. Yes, TSO is an extension of Savatage, sort of an outlet for their softer more formal side.

The Story line

Briefly The Lost Chistmas Eve revolves around an angel being sent to Earth by the Lord, "to bring Him the name of the person that best continued the work of his Son on Earth".

Favorite songs

The rocking song "Faith Noel" with not one but two old time Christmas carols, starts with a brief intro of "The First Noel" goes through a guitar driven symph rock bridge then diverges back into "God Rest ye Merry Gentlmen".

The slow building, power ballad "The Lost Christmas Eve" with heavy bass and acoustic guitar.

"Christmas Dreams" is a great up tempo ballad sung by my favorite singer from the concert, a fabulous singer named Michael Lanning. This guy is great!!!! Better in person than on the album.

"Winter in Wizards" A trickey, clever number featuring great piano playing with the band and violins joining at length.

Want a little Blues with you Christmas music? "Christmas Nights in Blue" is your song, Excellent!!

The well titled "Christmas Jam" is a hard rock/heavy metal jam that will knock your socks off. (especially in person)It has just enough bells and sundries to sound a little Christmasy. (made up a new word)

"What is Christmas?" A nice medium paced song with a big sound.

"Wish Liszt" From a Franz Liszt number

"What Child is This", A better version of the song you know and love. Powerful!!

"Christmas Canon Rock" A takeoff of Pacabel's Canon, wonderful!!!

Conclusion

The strength of The Lost Christmas Eve is, it can be all things to all people. To non Christians (there are a few billion) and those just sick of Xmas music, it is ear candy, a serious composition of beautiful melodies played in an imaginative enthralling style, by musicians of unquestioned ability.

Then for the the Xmas aficionados there are enough familiar Xmas melodies to satisfy them that this is indeed a new style of Christmas music - though many of the familiar melodies are instrumentals and classical classics, such as Mozart's -"Queen of the Winter Night" and Pacabel's "Canon" are indeed classics but not in the Christmas sense.

Now for the former group here is the good news, The Lost Christmas Eve so little resembles sappy mainstream Christmas music and is overall so inspiring that, you may want to play this music all year.

Author's Note

Admittedly I wrote this review while under the influence...........of the marvelous TSO rock concert that just enthralled me.

Was I influenced? Who knows, what do you think?

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Send comments to semismart (BETA) | Report this review (#33211)
Posted Thursday, February 17, 2005 | Review Permalink
OpethGuitarist
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars A Proggy Christmas

Excuse the horrible pun. My family is really big into TS Orchestra. It's about the only thing music wise we somewhat have in common, so excuse me for any side banter. This (the band's music) is played every Christmas, it's almost a tradition like the TBS marathon of A Christmas Story, it's just something thats done and you've got to do it once a year.

There's enough variety here to keep things interesting, and for Christmas standards, that's good news. Some of you may already be familiar with Wizards in Winter (it was used for that famous internet video-turned Miller Lite commercial for the guy with the Christmas Lights, played along to this song). The album has more to offer than this though, with surely some sounds you can familiarize yourself with.

It's not a "serious" album by any means (although the whole based around a religious holiday would seem to make it serious). It's a much more fun album, with lots of hard rocking, some blues, and many classical based allusions. In short, if your looking for different and more "fun" Christmas music to boost the joy, a highly recommend this. It won't go down as a prog great, but it's wonderful for that one month out of the year and that day with the whole family.

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Send comments to OpethGuitarist (BETA) | Report this review (#102228)
Posted Saturday, December 09, 2006 | Review Permalink
4 stars Another Christmas album by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra? I'm not complaning!

As noted before from my review of 'The Christmas Attic', both that album, and this album resieved 4 stars for different reasons. 'The Christmas Attic' for the colaberation of the songs, and this album for the songs themselfs. In this album, each song is just amasing. The songs found on this album are superier to that of their past Christmas albums, and are classics for the Christmas Season.

The highlights of this album are 'The Lost Christmas Eve', the very famouse 'Wizards in Winter' (Made populer by an internet video of a house's light show of christmas lights), 'Christmas Night in Blue', 'Christmas Jam', 'What is Christmas?', 'The Wisdom of Snow', 'Wish Liszt (Toy Shop Madness)', 'Back to a Reason, Pt. 2', 'What Child is This?' and finaly 'Christmas Canon Rock'. All these songs are masterpeases for the christmas season, it's hard not to love and enjoy this album. Normaly, with all these songs, it's hard not giving this a complete masterpeace rating of 5 stars....but there are some draw backs to the album.

The first is that I find this album a bit long. There are 23 songs on the album, and it only needs to have 12 tops. Alot of the other songs on this album seem as though they're filler songs. If they made this a dubble album and split all the songs onto two discs, it would have been much more enjoyable to listen. The songs on here that are good are just amasing, and those songs that arnt feel as though it's just filling time.

None the less, the whole album is enjoyable to listen to, and makes a perfict album to listen to for the christmas time. For those of us that get tiered of hearing the same old christmas songs over and over again, yet still want some christmas songs to get you in the mood for the season, this album is just perfict. It gives us a refreshing and new outlook on the traditional Christmas songs.

This album earns 4 stars from great christmas song. Although unlike the Christmas Attic, the way everything was put together weakens the album. Had it been put together more like the Christmas Attic, it would have easily reseaved 5 stars, but the album falls short from the make up of the great songs.

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Send comments to mothershabooboo (BETA) | Report this review (#156079)
Posted Thursday, December 20, 2007 | Review Permalink
ProgBagel
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Trans-Siberian Orchestra - 'The Lost Christmas Eve' 3 stars

Continuing on the right path.

I thought the last album was pretty good. They were going into a more instrumental approach then just choirs singing Christmas songs. This album continued that approach in this case. While the prior album had some absolutely devastating songs, this one didn't have any that were truly unbelievable. Unlike it though, the album had many more songs that were actually good and not just the lame Christmas songs you can find 1000 of the same versions on random Christmas cd's. I can recommend this one just as much as 'Beethoven's Last Night'.

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Send comments to ProgBagel (BETA) | Report this review (#190212)
Posted Sunday, November 23, 2008 | Review Permalink
4 stars Forget Slade, forget Mariah Carey and forget Cliff Richards. When it comes to Christmas music you can't get any better than Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

Brilliant compositions, fantastic musicianship, emotional vocals and some of the most beautiful melodies you'll ever hear. This is just some of the stuff that's in store for you between December 1st and December 25th.

With a good mixture of heavy and melodic songs, revisioned Christmas Carols and choir pieces, and vocal performances by singers of all different kinds of genres, the album remains fresh and exciting from start to finish. The mood and atmosphere it creates is amazing as well, and truly feels like Christmas.

With the exception that maybe one or two songs seem a bit pointless and filler, this is pretty much a masterpiece. However, TSO's biggest strength is also their biggest weakness. The fact that this is Christmas music makes you feel a bit stupid playing it in the middle of the Summer, therefore it only really sounds good at everyone's favourite time of the year.

But when December 25th comes around, light some candles, put on this album and open your presents with your loved ones. It is a truly amazing experience.

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Send comments to Valarius (BETA) | Report this review (#196265)
Posted Monday, December 29, 2008 | Review Permalink
TheGazzardian
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars If you want to listen to Christmas music, but want music with a litlte more energy, Trans-Siberian Orchestra is the way to go, and this is THE album for you. It is superior to their two previous Christmas albums, and includes one of their most popular songs, Wizards in Winter.

There is not a whole lot to say about this album that doesn't also apply to their first two Christmas albums. Unlike Beethoven's Last Night, the story is not really the highlight here. I do like this story better than their other two Christmas stories, however.

In this album,, the music is unrelentingly catchy. There are high moments, of course, but unlike their previous two albums, there aren't as many songs that seem overfull of exposition. Instead, we get songs like "The Lost Christmas Eve", which advances the story while still creating nice atmosphere and sounding musically interesting.

The ultimate highlight of this album, however, is the instrumentals. This one has the best instrumnentals of all three of their Christmas albums. This includes the aforementioned Wizards in Winter, Queen of the Winter Night, Wish Liszt (Toy Show Madness). The other instrumentals on this one are also great.

This album also include some humour, most notably in "What is Christmas?". In the middle of this song, the singer, lamenting how he hates snow, comments, "I don't even like the sound of it. Now, what was I talking about? Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha, oh yeah, I remember." It is just ridiculously cheesy, especially the laugh (which sounds somewhat evil), but in a way that comes across as funny instead of overwrought.

Definitely the highlight of their Christmas trilogy, and the best Christmas album I have heard so far. It does follow the same formula as their previous two, but Trans-Siberian Orchestra has mastered it here, and their Christmas music has never sounded better.

Four stars to any who like to get in the Christmas mood, and a solid three stars for all others (as the music, especially instrumentals, is great).

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Send comments to TheGazzardian (BETA) | Report this review (#247397)
Posted Friday, October 30, 2009 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars I have to hand it to Paul O'Neill. The man who rescued SAVATAGE those many years ago simply by believing in them and then putting his faith into practice by helping to write and compose songs with them sure has a way of telling stories. This might be my favourite of the three TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA albums I own.

As per usual Paul writes the words and composes the music. Once again the story centers around an angel who is sent to earth with a quest. This time to pick one person who can continue the work God's son did when down here. So we get the listen to the story of the angel's travels and experiences as he seeks to find this person. Going back to heaven to reveal to his Lord who he thinks this person is he realizes that anyone can be that person if they "Do unto others as they would have done unto them".

Once again we get members and former members of SAVATAGE helping out like Oliva, Middleton, Pitrelli and Caffery. I like the middle section where we get the jazzy "Christmas Jazz" followed by "Christmas Jam" and "Siberian Sleigh Ride". The latter has some energetic guitar in it.

This cd came with thick liner notes detailing the story along with lots of other info.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#881053)
Posted Sunday, December 23, 2012 | Review Permalink
4 stars In my opinion the Lost Christmas Eve is album doesn't garner anywhere near the respect it deserves. It is a very finely crafted rock/metal opera which is only slightly held back by the fact that it is a Christmas album. It pays tribute to and expands on many holiday classics with excellent virtuosity while telling a fitting story of charity and redemption. Owing to its subject matter though, it is most certainly best enjoyed in the season, but that shouldn't stop you from head banging with it any time. You just might feel a little awkward letting your locks fly in August to a metalized version of Oh Come All Ye Faithful. I can't say that I have not done it.

The greatest strength of the Lost Chrismas Eve for me is in the powerful and plentiful application of the human voice. Anno Domine, Remember, Christmas Dreams, Queen of the Winter Night, Chrismas Nights in Blue, O' Come All Ye Faithful, For the Sake Of Our Brother and Back to Reason Part (II) are all excellent pieces of vocal work done in a variety of different styles. Fans of vocal harmony should be particularly pleased with the traditional boys' choir style round of Remember. For me though, the emotional pinnacle of the album comes on What Child is This? The TSO version is considerably expanded beyond whatever you might think of the traditional carol and the masterful performance elevates it to a new height. Don't be afraid to put this one up to 11.

A long the way, there are also a number of instrumentals, the most notable of which is the frenetic Wizards in Winter. If you haven't already been exposed to this completely original work by the band, I suggest you get on it. A very interesting choreographed light show to this track originally got me to take notice of the band.

I've heard all three of the Christmas Trilogy albums, and this one is the strongest. At any time of year, it is easily deserving of a four out of five, but when you are listening to it on a dark and cold December evening I think you can bump it right up to a five without hesitation. It is a refreshingly humane album from a genre, metal, generally associated with blackness and atrocity, symbolically speaking of course. It probably suffers in the minds of many metal heads because of its lack of edge, but I'm willing to be those have a soft spot for it somewhere. This album was also important for turning me on to power metal. It isn't a power metal album per se, though it shares certain theatrical qualities, but my desire to hear more metal without the taint of "death growl" or the laxity of thrash came from this.

A brief aside on the "death growl," it is one of the worst things going in music, right up there with auto-tuning and the country twang. None of which thankfully appear on this splendid selection. (FYI: I don't hate thrash, it's just a sometimes food.)

I recommend this album to any one and that it should be a cherished part of your prog-collection, not just your Christmas collection. And, if you ever get the opportunity, do see it performed live. I believe the farewell tour this year. If you happen to see it coming near you, you lucky Americans, jump on it for me.

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Send comments to R-A-N-M-A (BETA) | Report this review (#1076421)
Posted Wednesday, November 13, 2013 | Review Permalink

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