Giving you the music a day early:
Prepare the eyeballs, because Trans-Siberian Orchestra is returning to Verizon Arena with two shows: 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. Doors for the 3 p.m. show open at 2 p.m., and doors for the 8 p.m. show open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $27, $43, $53 and $63, and available at the Verizon Arena Box Office. TSO is one of world’s top-selling concert acts, combining orchestral hard rock with a spectacular visual display that includes lasers, pyrotechnics and dazzling lighting. Or, as TSO founder, producer and writer Paul O’Neill said: “When someone goes to a TSO concert, we don’t want them to walk away saying, ‘That was a great show,’ or ‘That was worth it,’ or even ‘That was the best show I’ve seen in a long time.’ We want them to say, ‘Man, that the best show ever; we just ripped that band off.'” Expect Christmas-themed hard rock with a mixture of cuts from the band’s latest album, 2009’s Night Castle.
It’s that time of year again as infectious power pop rockers Ashtray Babyhead return for their one-off holiday gig at Juanita’s. Ashtray Babyhead pumped out their blend of Arkansas power pop in the late ’90s before becoming The Kicks. Joining the band will be the reformed Kansas power pop group Ultimate Fakebook with their fuzzed out rock. The band is performing only four shows on their Winter Tour 2010 and were nice enough to include an Arkansas gig in the lot. Other acts include fellow Lawrence, Kan., band The Dead Girls, a supergroup formed from Ultimate Fakebook and Podstar known for their guitar-fueled power pop, and The Dirty Streets, a young Memphis rock ‘n’ roll outfit with punk and soul roots, and raised on Deep Purple, Sly & the Family Stone and Led Zeppelin. The music begins at 9 p.m. with a $6 cover.
The spicy, Latin-flavored rock of Austin, Texas, outfit Vallejo is no stranger to Little Rock, and the quartet will revisit central Arkansas with a show at Sticky Fingerz. The opening act is to be announced, but expect the music at 9 p.m. with cover $8 for the 21-and-up show. The group — known for their fiery blend of hard rock guitars with Latin percussion, soulful vocals and a sweltering funk sound — released a 12-track collection of tunes titled Acousta, featuring unplugged variations of their tunes “Snake In The Grass,” “Forever (Is A Long Time),” “Into The New,” “Beautiful Life” and more, in January.
Tennessee metalcore band Straight Line Stitch returns to Little Rock with a headlining show at Downtown Music. Joining the band will be The Mutha Load, a Texarkana quartet known for their down-tempo, Southern metal; Sychosys, the Southern-flavored metal band from Little Rock who create workingman’s metal influenced by bands such as Pantera, Black Label Society and old-school heavy rock acts such as Black Sabbath; A DarkEnd Era, a Little Rock quintet that mixes slow death metal rhythms with hardcore riffs to create their self-described “crazy brutal tunes; Iron Ton, an alternative metal band featuring two Sychosys members; and Eddie and the Defiantz, a punk thrash band with tons of attitude and a great live show. The doors open at 7:30 p.m. with the music at 8 p.m.
Arkansas River Blues Society celebrates the coming of Christmas a weekend early with their Xmas Party at Cornerstone Pub, featuring CloverBlue as the house band. The party starts at 8 p.m. with Arkansas River Blues Society members getting in free. Members whose memberships have expired can renew for half price of $5, and non-members can join Arkansas River Blues Society for $10 and get in free. Cover is otherwise $5 for the public.
Here’s Trans-Siberian Orchestra doing their thing with “Christmas Canon Rock”: