Trans-Siberian Orchestra

3 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday, December 12. Scottrade Center, 1401 Clark Avenue.

You'd better not pout, better not cry. You'd better not shout "Freebird!" and I'm telling you why: The Trans-Siberian Orchestra is coming to town. Each winter, TSO stirs up a yule-tidal wave of progressive metal and laser lights, stimulating the senses like a snowball to the face. Although the band has become a December fixture along with Claymation television specials and uncomfortable conversations with children about Santa Claus, TSO's newest double album, Night Castle, abandons holiday themes. Decorated with vocals (the instrumental band's equivalent of Dylan going electric), Castle is a rock opera that plays more like a fruitcake version of Meatloaf than a mighty Chrismastodon. Despite this lump of coal in its discography, Trans-Siberian Orchestra will surely shred the halls of the Scottrade Center with riff-riffic seasonal favorites. 'Tis the season to be proggy.