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The Wizards Of Winter
The Wizards Of Winter
December 2016
Released: 2014, Indie
Rating: 3.0/5
Reviewer: JP

For The Twelve Days of Christmas my true love gave to me…

12. Northern Light Orchestra-Celebrate Christmas

11. Notre Dame-Nightmare Before Christmas

10. Psychostick-The Flesh Eating Rollerskate Holiday Joyride

9. Raskaampaa Joulua-Raskaampaa Joulua

8. Raskasta Joulua-Raskasta Joulua

7. Raskasta Joulua-Raskasta Joulua 2

6. The Kings Of Christmas-365 Days A Year

5. The Wizards Of Winter-The Wizards Of Winter

4. Trans-Siberian Orchestra-Christmas Eve And Other Stories

3. Trans-Siberian Orchestra-The Lost Christmas Eve

2. Twisted Sister-A Twisted Christmas

1. Various Artists-Monster Ballads Christmas

13. (Bonus evil album!) Onkel Tom-Ich Glaub’ Nicht An Den Weihnachtsmann

Every year on Dec 1st, I pull out the box containing over 40 of my cherished Metal Christmas CD’s. This year I decided to review a few more for Metal-Rules. Please enjoy all of this 12 days of Christmas Metal album review feature…, plus one evil bonus review! Who says Christmas can’t be Metal?

In order to understand the semi-complicated history of this band you almost have to read my review of the album called 365 DAYS A YEAR by the band called The Kings Of Christmas. The two bands are inextricably linked.

Back in 2009 a couple of guys in the Tri-state area, presumably inspired by the success of Trans-Siberian Orchestra, decided to make a charity project for a local food bank. The called The Wizards of Winter, named after the TSO song. It was a bit of a TSO tribute act and they played some local gigs and even covered TSO tunes. Then in 2014 they released their debut album. Over time the band has played with or recruited up to five ex-members of TSO and The Kings of Christmas. Confused yet? Basically a bunch of guys from TSO quit, created the Kings Of Christmas, but ended up joining the Wizards of Winter.

History aside, this album is essentially a clone of TSO. That is not a bad thing. The production is great, performances are fine, the songs are well-written and performed to the max. It is a nice mix of instrumentals, vocals and a blend of rock/ Metal and classical. Heavy piano and keyboard drive the album, much like TSO. The album opener ‘Arctic Flyer’ could have fit easily on any TSO album. ‘The March Of The Metal Soldiers’ is another highlight on the heavier instrumental end of the spectrum. ‘Gales Of Winter’ has a nice Deep Purple vibe with some Hammond-like organ sounds. The CD itself is nice, but could have used a bit more polish, it is a simple digipak, no booklet and the cover art is blurry. Maybe it was just my pressing.

Despite having any number of ex-TSO guys in the band and on the album, it still feels very slightly derivative. However, you can never have too many Christmas Rock Operas? Right?
Track Listing

1. The Arctic Flyer
2. Special Feeling
3. Sing O'Alleluia
4. Night of Reflection
5. Once Long Ago
6. Gales of December
7. Moments of Wonder
8. March of the Metal Soldiers
9. The Journey
10. Just Believe
11. A Simple Gift
12. Ode to Eisenach
13. Christmas Lullaby


Scott Kelly
Sharon Kelly
Steve Ratchen
Fred Gorhau
Guy Lemonier
Greg Smith
Mary McIntyre
Tommy Ference
T.W. Durfy
Peter Shaw
Vincent Jiovino
Tony Gaynor
Shawna Mehall



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