The narrator spins a tale of the holiday kind as the band punctuates each bit of the plot with a song that's a twist on a Christmas classic or one all its own, while a magnificent light show washes over the audience and faux snow begins to fall – and it's not even the perennial local favorite Trans-Siberian Orchestra we're talking about.
Twelve Twenty Four is now in its 11th season as a local holiday act, bringing with it much of the TSO feel and then some.
The group began in 2001 with five musicians and two crew members. Today it touts 17 musicians and over half a dozen crew members, as well as a desire to push behind its TSO tribute band label.
What we're trying to do is take the things to a different level now, drummer and original band member Rich Kossuth said. We're already on our second CD and we keep growing, trying and doing new things.
While Twelve Twenty Four tells a story during its shows like TSO does, the band is changing it up this year by having a child narrator. The group's stage show is what Kossuth calls a cut-down version of TSO's, though that doesn't mean it falls anything short of incredible.
Obviously we don't have the budget they have, but we do as much as we can for the area that we're in, Kossuth said. We do have moving lights, lasers, and, actually, we had snow before they did.
As the years have gone on, Twelve Twenty-Four has tackled TSO songs as well as some the group hasn't done, like Little Drummer Boy. Several originals have been written, many of which are a part of the band's just-released second album, Light in the Dark.
Light in the Dark tells a story, not so much through lyrics but through the way the music is presented.
It starts in a positive manner, goes to a darker sound, then goes back into what we call ‘an awakening,' a more positive feeling, keyboard, guitar player, and vocalist Jason Santos, original band member, said.
There's a lot of personal history in the album. There's meaning throughout, even in the cover art.
It's about the evolution of the band itself. It took two years to put the album together and through that process we had some good times, and some bad. We had a member pass away, band transitions; there was a lot of emotions, which run through the album.
Some of the album's original tracks include Winter Heart, Christmas Miracle, and Light in the Dark. Twelve Twenty-Four does its own takes on Christmas favorites Hark the Herald Angels Sing and Joy to the World, among other tracks.
As far as the album goes, fans should notice that while one side is a Christmas tree, the other is not. As with the placement of the songs, there's a reason.
We are unique in that we're a TSO tribute band, and we tour only during the holiday, Santos said, but what we'd really like to do it promote and be out there all year long.
What: Twelve Twenty-Four
When: 6 p.m. Sunday.
Where: Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church, 237 William St., Pittston.
Tickets: $15, available at the church, www.twelvetwentyfour.net, or Rock Street Music on South Main Street in Pittston.