SAVATAGE
Power Metal / Traditional heavy metal / Progressive Metal / Hard Rock • United States

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Savatage is a heavy metal/progressive metal band founded by the brothers Jon and Criss Oliva in 1979. The band is known for recording many rock operas. Early on, Savatage was a traditional heavy metal band, who stood out from the pack due to guitarist Criss Oliva's uncommonly heavy riffing and vocalist Jon Oliva's unique vocal stylings.

Following the failure of Fight for the Rock, an attempt to commercialize their sound, Savatage began moving in a more operatic direction, releasing a number of rock opera albums in collaboration with producer Paul O'Neill.

After the tragic death of Criss Oliva, the band soldiered on to continued critical acclaim but diminishing commercial success. However, Oliva and O'Neill lucked out when a single from Dead Winter Dead, "Christmas Eve (Sarajevo 12/24)", managed to crack the singles chart. The song, a reworking of a classic Christmas hymn, acted as a launching pad for the immensely
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OMEN Warning Of Danger Metal Blade Savatage Rare OMEN Warning Of Danger Metal Blade Savatage Rare USD $1.07 (2 bids)
2h 16m
Streets: A Rock Opera by Savatage (CD, Oct-1991, Atlantic (Label)) Streets: A Rock Opera by Savatage (CD, Oct-1991, Atlantic (Label)) USD $3.99 Buy It Now 2h 31m
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6h
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6h
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6h
SAVATAGE - SAVATAGE - "STREETS" A ROCK OPERA (CD) 1991 ATLANTIC USD $1.99 (0 bids)
7h
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11h
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12h
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12h
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Savatage Edge Of Thorns CD Savatage Edge Of Thorns CD USD $8.94 Buy It Now 16h
SAVATAGE STREETS A ROCK OPERA GERMAN CASSETTE TAPE SAVATAGE STREETS A ROCK OPERA GERMAN CASSETTE TAPE USD $10.09 Buy It Now 17h
SAVATAGE GUTTER BALLET GERMAN CASSETTE TAPE SAVATAGE GUTTER BALLET GERMAN CASSETTE TAPE USD $10.09 Buy It Now 17h
Christmas Eve and Other Stories Trans-Siberian Orchestra (CD1996) NRMT Savatage Christmas Eve and Other Stories Trans-Siberian Orchestra (CD1996) NRMT Savatage USD $9.99 Buy It Now 18h
SAVATAGE Sirens Cassette Tape 1985 Banzai Canada Press Heavy Metal SAVATAGE Sirens Cassette Tape 1985 Banzai Canada Press Heavy Metal USD $16.00 Buy It Now 19h
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20h
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20h
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Handful of Rain by Savatage (CD Aug-1994 Atlantic) Flawless Complete - Free SHIP Handful of Rain by Savatage (CD Aug-1994 Atlantic) Flawless Complete - Free SHIP USD $6.95 (0 bids)
USD $9.99 Buy It Now
20h
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Edge of Thorns by Savatage (CD, Mar-1993, Atlantic (Label)) Edge of Thorns by Savatage (CD, Mar-1993, Atlantic (Label)) USD $1.99 (0 bids)
USD $5.95 Buy It Now
23h
POWER CHORDS-Vol.1/KIX-Testament/MALICE-Savatage/RAVEN POWER CHORDS-Vol.1/KIX-Testament/MALICE-Savatage/RAVEN USD $5.99 Buy It Now 1 day
Savatage - Handful Of Rain RARE ORG 94 Bullet Proof MFN Alex Skolnick Jon Oliva Savatage - Handful Of Rain RARE ORG 94 Bullet Proof MFN Alex Skolnick Jon Oliva USD $14.99 Buy It Now 1 day
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VAUDEVILLE Promo Demo 93 Fates Warning Crimson Glory Queensrÿche Savatage VAUDEVILLE Promo Demo 93 Fates Warning Crimson Glory Queensrÿche Savatage USD $9.99 (1 bids)
1 day
SAVATAGE Streets: A Rock Opera CASSETTE TAPE 1991 Made in Canada Heavy Metal SAVATAGE Streets: A Rock Opera CASSETTE TAPE 1991 Made in Canada Heavy Metal USD $8.95 Buy It Now 1 day
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SAVATAGE Poets And Madmen CD prog heavy metal original 2001 US Nuclear Blast SAVATAGE Poets And Madmen CD prog heavy metal original 2001 US Nuclear Blast USD $8.00 (0 bids)
1 day
Dead Winter Dead by Savatage (CD, Oct-1995, Atlantic (Label) MINT CONDITION Dead Winter Dead by Savatage (CD, Oct-1995, Atlantic (Label) MINT CONDITION USD $6.99 Buy It Now 1 day
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Savatage Streets CD Savatage Streets CD USD $9.99 Buy It Now 1 day
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1 day
SAVATAGE / HANDFUL OF RAIN JAPAN CD OOP SAVATAGE / HANDFUL OF RAIN JAPAN CD OOP USD $19.99 Buy It Now 1 day
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SAVATAGE Japan live 1998 official EGYPTIAN MIRAGE RECORDS AUDIO CASSETTE SAVATAGE Japan live 1998 official EGYPTIAN MIRAGE RECORDS AUDIO CASSETTE USD $53.00 Buy It Now 1 day
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1 day
SAVATAGE - GHOST IN THE RUINS - NEW CD SAVATAGE - GHOST IN THE RUINS - NEW CD USD $12.86 Buy It Now 1 day
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SAVATAGE**1994: LIVE IN KAWASAKI**2 CD SET SAVATAGE**1994: LIVE IN KAWASAKI**2 CD SET USD $14.95 Buy It Now 1 day
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1 day
SAVATAGE SAVATAGE "COMMISSAR" RARE 2001 CD SINGLE USD $8.99 Buy It Now 1 day
Faces (+ Bonus CD) by Chris Caffery (CD, Sep-2004, Black Lotus) SAVATAGE Faces (+ Bonus CD) by Chris Caffery (CD, Sep-2004, Black Lotus) SAVATAGE USD $1.99 (0 bids)
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1 day
Savatage Poets and Madmen double Picture LP Savatage Poets and Madmen double Picture LP USD $35.00 (0 bids)
1 day
Savatage Power of the Night picture LP Savatage Power of the Night picture LP USD $15.95 (0 bids)
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1 day
Savatage Fight For The Rock picture LP Savatage Fight For The Rock picture LP USD $15.95 (0 bids)
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1 day
Savatage: Fight For the Rock LP Savatage: Fight For the Rock LP USD $12.99 Buy It Now 2 days
Wake of Magellan by Savatage Wake of Magellan by Savatage USD $8.41 Buy It Now 2 days
Guster, Reverend Horton Heat, Deftones, Green Day, Savatage - U.S PROMO cd Guster, Reverend Horton Heat, Deftones, Green Day, Savatage - U.S PROMO cd USD $13.72 Buy It Now 2 days
Savatage: Live In Japan [Nuclear Blast] CD Savatage: Live In Japan [Nuclear Blast] CD USD $8.99 Buy It Now 2 days
Savatage Sirens LP MFN 48 Ex FRANCE Savatage Sirens LP MFN 48 Ex FRANCE USD $64.99 Buy It Now 2 days
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Edge of Thorns SAVATAGE Forever After single CD Edge of Thorns SAVATAGE Forever After single CD USD $5.99 Buy It Now 2 days
4  Used Savatage Cassette Tapes 4 Used Savatage Cassette Tapes USD $0.99 (0 bids)
2 days
Savatage Gutter Ballet Canada Cassette Savatage Gutter Ballet Canada Cassette USD $3.00 Buy It Now 2 days
Chris Caffery (of Savatage / Trans-Siberian Orchestra) Faces 2 CD Set '05 Chris Caffery (of Savatage / Trans-Siberian Orchestra) Faces 2 CD Set '05 USD $8.00 Buy It Now 2 days
SAVATAGE streets a rock opera JAPAN CD Jon Oliva's Pain AMCY-304 SAVATAGE streets a rock opera JAPAN CD Jon Oliva's Pain AMCY-304 USD $18.99 Buy It Now 2 days
SAVATAGE - Streets-A Rock Opera 1991 Atlantic SAVATAGE - Streets-A Rock Opera 1991 Atlantic USD $1.00 (1 bids)
2 days
SAVATAGE Edge Of Thorns Cd New / Sealed Jon Oliva Circle II Circle Virgin Steele SAVATAGE Edge Of Thorns Cd New / Sealed Jon Oliva Circle II Circle Virgin Steele USD $8.99 Buy It Now 2 days
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The Wake of Magellan by Savatage (CD, Apr-1998, Lava Records (USA)) The Wake of Magellan by Savatage (CD, Apr-1998, Lava Records (USA)) USD $0.50 (0 bids)
2 days
Savatage / Silens   Japan CD w Obi  PHCR-16151 Savatage / Silens Japan CD w Obi PHCR-16151 USD $35.00 (0 bids)
2 days
SAVATAGE STREETS A ROCK OPERA CD + 1 BONUS TRACK 1997 EDEL OOP JON OLIVA TSO SAVATAGE STREETS A ROCK OPERA CD + 1 BONUS TRACK 1997 EDEL OOP JON OLIVA TSO USD $8.99 Buy It Now 2 days
JAG PANZER-TYRANTS,US POWER METAL,NWOBHM,REISSUE,RUTHLESS,SAVATAGE,RIOT,ACCEPT JAG PANZER-TYRANTS,US POWER METAL,NWOBHM,REISSUE,RUTHLESS,SAVATAGE,RIOT,ACCEPT USD $25.00 (0 bids)
2 days
* SAVATAGE - Dead Winter Dead (CD 1995) METAL ATLANTIC 82850-2 * SAVATAGE - Dead Winter Dead (CD 1995) METAL ATLANTIC 82850-2 USD $5.50 Buy It Now 2 days
SAVATAGE - LIVE IN JAPAN - 207130ERE SAVATAGE - LIVE IN JAPAN - 207130ERE USD $13.85 Buy It Now 2 days
SAVATAGE 1994 CD - Handful Of Rain +1 - Progressive Metal/Circle II Circle/OOP. SAVATAGE 1994 CD - Handful Of Rain +1 - Progressive Metal/Circle II Circle/OOP. USD $4.49 (0 bids)
2 days
COLLISION s/t +1 1992 JAPAN CD OBI SRCS 6563 Savatage Testament Grand Funk cover COLLISION s/t +1 1992 JAPAN CD OBI SRCS 6563 Savatage Testament Grand Funk cover USD $7.99 (0 bids)
2 days
SAVATAGE Commissar w/ RARE UNRELEASE TRK UK CD single SEALED Al Pitrelli Trk SAVATAGE Commissar w/ RARE UNRELEASE TRK UK CD single SEALED Al Pitrelli Trk USD $24.99 Buy It Now 2 days
SAVATAGE SIRENS JAPAN CD w/Obi PHCR-16151 1st Pressing SAVATAGE SIRENS JAPAN CD w/Obi PHCR-16151 1st Pressing USD $120.00 Buy It Now 2 days
The Wake of Magellan by Savatage (Cassette, Apr-1998, Lava Records (USA)) VG The Wake of Magellan by Savatage (Cassette, Apr-1998, Lava Records (USA)) VG USD $16.99 (0 bids)
2 days
Gutter Ballet by Savatage (Cassette, Jan-1990, Atlantic (Label)) VG Gutter Ballet by Savatage (Cassette, Jan-1990, Atlantic (Label)) VG USD $4.99 (0 bids)
2 days
Power of the Night by Savatage (CD, 1985, Atlantic (Label)) VG Power of the Night by Savatage (CD, 1985, Atlantic (Label)) VG USD $19.99 (0 bids)
2 days
SAVATAGE 1995 CD - Ghost In The Ruins - Progressive Metal/Circle II Circle/OOP. SAVATAGE 1995 CD - Ghost In The Ruins - Progressive Metal/Circle II Circle/OOP. USD $6.99 (0 bids)
3 days
Oliva Raise The Curtain digipack bonus track CD new Savatage Jon Doctor Butcher Oliva Raise The Curtain digipack bonus track CD new Savatage Jon Doctor Butcher USD $27.49 Buy It Now 3 days
Savatage Ghost in The Ruins Live Tribute To Chris Oliva CD digipack 2011 reissue Savatage Ghost in The Ruins Live Tribute To Chris Oliva CD digipack 2011 reissue USD $13.49 Buy It Now 3 days
Savatage Live in Japan digipack CD new 2011 Remaster Savatage Live in Japan digipack CD new 2011 Remaster USD $13.49 Buy It Now 3 days
Savatage - Poets & Madmen ADVANCE DJ SEALED CD 2001 Savatage - Poets & Madmen ADVANCE DJ SEALED CD 2001 USD $11.99 (0 bids)
3 days
Lizzy Borden CD Master of Disguise savatage queensryche w.a.s.p. queen styx ozzy Lizzy Borden CD Master of Disguise savatage queensryche w.a.s.p. queen styx ozzy USD $0.99 (1 bids)
3 days
SAVATAGE 'Hall Of The Mountain King' NM unplayed 12 SAVATAGE 'Hall Of The Mountain King' NM unplayed 12" Promo DJ 1987 single USD $24.99 Buy It Now 3 days
SAVATAGE CD SAVATAGE CD "DEAD WINTER DEAD" - 13 KILLER TRACKS USD $1.99 (0 bids)
3 days
5 CDs Black Sabbath/Metallica/Savatage/Sanctuary/Faith No More 5 CDs Black Sabbath/Metallica/Savatage/Sanctuary/Faith No More USD $9.99 Buy It Now 3 days
SAVATAGE Power of the Night CD SAVATAGE Power of the Night CD USD $3.87 (5 bids)
3 days
SAVATAGE-From The Gutter To The Stage-The Best Of Savatage '81-'95 Autograhed!!! SAVATAGE-From The Gutter To The Stage-The Best Of Savatage '81-'95 Autograhed!!! USD $79.99 Buy It Now 3 days
SAVATAGE-The Wake Of Magellan 1997 Power Metal +Savatage Poster!! Autograhed!!! SAVATAGE-The Wake Of Magellan 1997 Power Metal +Savatage Poster!! Autograhed!!! USD $79.99 Buy It Now 3 days
Savatage - Live In Japan (NEW CD) Savatage - Live In Japan (NEW CD) USD $14.69 Buy It Now 3 days
Savatage Gutter Ballet CD (UK Import) NEW Savatage Gutter Ballet CD (UK Import) NEW USD $11.20 Buy It Now 3 days
Savatage - Live In Japan NEW CD Savatage - Live In Japan NEW CD USD $10.99 Buy It Now 3 days
Streets: A Rock Opera by Savatage (Cassette, Oct-1991, Atlantic (Label)) VG cond Streets: A Rock Opera by Savatage (Cassette, Oct-1991, Atlantic (Label)) VG cond USD $7.99 Buy It Now 4 days
BIOHAZARD KILL OR BE KILLED (CD) READ NOTES1 FILTER NELMUT DISTURBED SAVATAGE OZ BIOHAZARD KILL OR BE KILLED (CD) READ NOTES1 FILTER NELMUT DISTURBED SAVATAGE OZ USD $0.99 (0 bids)
USD $5.00 Buy It Now
4 days
SAVATAGE GUTTER BALLET & THE POWER OF THE NIGHT (2 CASSETTES) READ NOTES NO SLEV SAVATAGE GUTTER BALLET & THE POWER OF THE NIGHT (2 CASSETTES) READ NOTES NO SLEV USD $0.99 (0 bids)
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4 days
GERMAN PRESSING Savatage Atlantic 775-1 Hall Of The Mountain King GERMAN PRESSING Savatage Atlantic 775-1 Hall Of The Mountain King USD $9.99 (0 bids)
4 days
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Hall of the Mountain KingHall of the Mountain King
Atlantic 1990
Audio CD$7.05
$4.81 (used)
Gutter BalletGutter Ballet
Atlantic 1990
Audio CD$5.90
$2.51 (used)
Edge of ThornsEdge of Thorns
Atlantic 1993
Audio CD$5.59
$0.01 (used)
Streets: A Rock Opera (Narrated Version / Video Collection)Streets: A Rock Opera (Narrated Version / Video Collection)
CD+DVD
Edel Records
Audio CD$11.16
$36.93 (used)
Dungeons Are CallingDungeons Are Calling
Import
101 DISTRIBUTION 2010
Audio CD$8.19
$19.70 (used)
Streets: A Rock OperaStreets: A Rock Opera
Atlantic 1991
Audio CD$5.70
$2.03 (used)
Power of the NightPower of the Night
Import
101 DISTRIBUTION 2010
Audio CD$5.50
$14.53 (used)
Dead Winter DeadDead Winter Dead
Atlantic 1995
Audio CD$6.38
$2.89 (used)
Ghost in the RuinsGhost in the Ruins
Import
101 DISTRIBUTION 2011
Audio CD$5.55
$14.53 (used)
SirensSirens
Limited Edition · Remastered
Metal Blade 2002
Audio CD$29.98
$7.50 (used)
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SAVATAGE Discography

SAVATAGE albums / top albums

.. Album Cover 3.41 | 16 ratings
Sirens
Traditional heavy metal 1983
.. Album Cover 2.95 | 20 ratings
Power Of The Night
Traditional heavy metal 1985
.. Album Cover 2.09 | 12 ratings
Fight For The Rock
Hard Rock 1986
.. Album Cover 4.03 | 34 ratings
Hall Of The Mountain King
Power Metal 1987
.. Album Cover 4.02 | 30 ratings
Gutter Ballet
Power Metal 1989
.. Album Cover 3.82 | 26 ratings
Streets: A Rock Opera
Progressive Metal 1991
.. Album Cover 3.96 | 30 ratings
Edge Of Thorns
Traditional heavy metal 1993
.. Album Cover 3.60 | 20 ratings
Handful Of Rain
Power Metal 1994
.. Album Cover 4.00 | 29 ratings
Dead Winter Dead
Progressive Metal 1995
.. Album Cover 4.17 | 32 ratings
The Wake Of Magellan
Progressive Metal 1997
.. Album Cover 3.88 | 18 ratings
Poets And Madmen
Progressive Metal 2001

SAVATAGE EPs & splits

.. Album Cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Avatar - City Beneath The Surface
Traditional heavy metal 1982
.. Album Cover 2.62 | 8 ratings
The Dungeons Are Calling
Traditional heavy metal 1984

SAVATAGE live albums

.. Album Cover 3.08 | 6 ratings
Japan Live '94
Power Metal 1995
.. Album Cover 4.17 | 6 ratings
Ghost In The Ruins: A Tribute To Criss Oliva
Power Metal 1995

SAVATAGE demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

SAVATAGE boxset & compilations

.. Album Cover 4.25 | 2 ratings
From The Gutter To The Stage: The Best Of 1981 - 1995
Power Metal 1995
.. Album Cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
The Best And The Rest
Power Metal 1997
.. Album Cover 4.00 | 2 ratings
Believe
Power Metal 1998
.. Album Cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
Still the Orchestra Plays - Greatest Hits Volume 1 & 2
Power Metal 2010

SAVATAGE singles (2)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
One Child
Power Metal 1996
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Commissar
Power Metal 2001

SAVATAGE movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
3.11 | 3 ratings
Japan Live '94
Power Metal 1995

SAVATAGE Reviews

SAVATAGE Hall Of The Mountain King

Album · 1987 · Power Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Warthur
Adding progressive metal accents to their power metal style, Hall of the Mountain King finds Savatage in a mood which is equal parts experimental and playful. Knocking off a metallised Grieg cover in the form of Prelude to Madness come across more like a bit of fun than a track to be taken more seriously, and I think it slightly suffers from its placement on the CD - remember, on the original album it was the opening track to side 2, so it's slightly less disruptive there as a quick goof-off than as the momentum-sapper in the middle of the running order it is on the CD. Still, aside from that one track the group are in good form and in general the album is highly enjoyable if you're after progressive power metal that doesn't take itself too seriously.

SAVATAGE Streets: A Rock Opera

Album · 1991 · Progressive Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Warthur
With vocalist Jon Oliva's Alice Cooper-inspired delivery honed to perfection and the band in good form, Savatage's Streets: A Rock Opera is an enjoyable listen which may get a little cheesy here and there (especially on concluding track Believe) but is entertaining enough to let me just about accept the cheese. From the opening skit, which manages to pitch itself perfectly between theatrical flair and realistic grit, the band manage an impressive tightrope act which ensures that no aspect of their sound from the progressive to the cheesy to the balls-out heavy goes wanting for attention, making this a well-rounded album which should have wide appeal to a broad range of listeners.

SAVATAGE Handful Of Rain

Album · 1994 · Power Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Kingcrimsonprog
Handful Of Rain is the eighth full-length studio album by the American Metal band Savatage. It was released in 1994, and like many of the band's albums it was produced by Paul O'Neil and Jon Olivia.

It was the band's second album with Zak Stevens on lead vocals and former lead singer Jon Olivia taking a back seat in a new slot covering the roles of composer, piano/keys and live backing vocals. Additionally, he performed bass and drums on this album as the band were in turmoil following founding member (and brother to Jon) Criss Olivia's untimely death.

The album also features Testament's Alex Scholnick on lead guitar now that Criss had passed away. His style is very different to Criss' style but nonetheless suits the album remarkably well. Savatage always managed to make all of their albums pretty different from the one before anyway, and Handful Of Rain was made in those aforementioned tragic circumstances. Here the change manifests itself in the form of the music being a lot darker and heavier than on the album that preceded it, 1993's Edge Of Thorns.

The year in which it was released also had an effect on its sound. Some of the tracks on it have a sort of groove metal sound, or at least that metalized rock sound which many Thrash, Power and Prog Metal bands who started in the 80s seemed to flirt with in the first half of the 90s. That is only a small part of the sound however, and other tracks such as `Chance,' `Visions' and `Alone You Breathe' contain progressive elements, which the band would take much further on their next three albums.

Regardless of direction, the musicianship on the album is first rate, as is the songwriting and both are complimented perfectly by Paul O'Neil's superb production job, which helps the whole thing come together and feel like a great flowing record and not just a schizophrenic collection of various styles. When the quieter tracks like `Watching You Fall' and `Staring Into The Sun' pick up the power, they have a real bite, and so can sit comfortably with ragers like `Nothing's Going On' without sounding out of place.

The absolute highlight of the album for me personally is `Castles Burning,' which is a slow dark number constantly building up and threatening to explode, then giving way to acoustic moments. Its full of great lead guitar work and boasts some of Zak's finest vocal performances on record.

Overall; Handful Of Rain is a great album that covers a lot of ground, it has touches of Prog, a bit of balladry and a bit of 90s-sounding metal in there too. The guitar work is brilliant, the tone is satisfying and the production is exemplary. Simply put, its' just a very good album and I highly recommend this album. Definitely check it out if you are a fan of the band, but then again its also even worth a listen if you just like Metal in general.

SAVATAGE Power Of The Night

Album · 1985 · Traditional heavy metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Kingcrimsonprog
Power Of The Night is the second full-length studio album by the American Heavy/Power/Progressive Metal band Savatage, which was produced by Max Norman and released in 1985, following up their 1983 debut album Sirens and their 1984 EP The Dungeons Are Calling.

Stylistically; as opposed to the conceptual, symphonic, piano filled, Progressive Metal sound that the band would later adopt, or the commercial sound of the Fight For The Rock album which the band veered into just once; this album is more in the vein of their debut album.

The sound in question is somewhere around the point where classic metal becomes early Power Metal while sounding close to, but not quite Thrash Metal yet (although ‘Washed Out’ is kind of reminiscent of the first two Overkill albums).

As an album, Power Of The Night is good, but it isn’t perfect. In terms of songwriting, its not the most creative or memorable thing that the band have ever done, and there are a few tracks that don’t stand up all that well against the best of the band’s catalogue. The production isn’t exactly fantastic either and so the songs don’t jump out at you as energetically as they do on say, Hall Of The Mountain King.

That being said however, there is still a lot to like about the album and if you like the band its worth checking out. Standout tracks include the Title Track with its memorable lead riff; ‘Hard For Love’ which is an out of place Kiss-esque Hard Rock number with hilariously cheesy sexually suggestive lyrics and the big ballady album closer ‘In The Dream’ which has an absolutely fabulous guitar solo.

Overall; Power Of The Night is an interesting album and worth considering for your collection. There are better Savatage albums to start with admittedly, but if you enjoy the Jon’s voice or Chris’ distinctive riff and solo sounds and want to hear them play some direct, to the point, powerful classic metal then its definitely worth picking up.

SAVATAGE Streets: A Rock Opera

Album · 1991 · Progressive Metal
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Kingcrimsonprog
Streets: A Rock Opera was the sixth full-length studio album by the American Progressive Metal band Savatage. As you can probably tell from its title, the album is a concept album that is tied together by a singular narrative in which each song tells a part of the same story.

The story in question is based on a play called ‘Gutter Ballet’ (which was also the title of the band’s previous studio album with which some material here overlaps) written by the album’s producer Paul O’Neil. It chronicles the life of a petty drug dealer who gains success as a rock star before loosing it all, trying to get it all back and who sees his friend murdered when his past comes back to haunt him.

Singer Jon Olivia masterfully expresses the emotions of the story’s central character (named DT – ‘Down Town’ or ‘Detox’ – Jesus, depending on the flawed memory of another character) and the musicians are excellent at conveying the mood of each track as determined by the story (for example ‘Sam And Tex’ is a faster, more anarchic track which reflects the fight which is occurring in the story).

Furthermore, Chris Oliva’s guitar solos are absolutely out of this world. There are some seriously creative, impressive and expressive solos on this record that really elevate it to a whole other level musically.

If you are generally into the excesses of Prog Metal or even modern Prog-like music, and love the theatrics of albums like Metropolis Pt. 2, Operation: Mindcrime or the whole Amory Wars series then this should almost certainly be of some interest for you. It flows very differently than a lot of other concept albums seem to however, and is already pretty interesting on that structural level alone.

To be fair, if you are only into very straight faced Metal and don’t care for the overuse of ballads, pianos, ‘cheesy’ moments or anything too theatrical then this is not a great album to start your Savatage journey with. The album got labeled as ‘Broadway Metal’ by some people at the time precisely because it shares an awful lot in common with musicals, so if that idea seems unappealing then maybe you should start off with something heavier and more direct like ‘Hall Of The Mountain King’ instead.

After releasing this album Jon Olivia would take a back seat within the band’s line-up away from the limelight for over a decade and a new era would begin. Just a few years later Chris Olivia would be dead. Historically, Streets is a very interesting final chapter of sorts and its easy to see both musically and historically why it is so dear to many fan’s hearts. If you are a fan of the band at all then you really ought to check it out.

Overall; It could be argued that the album is a little overlong, a bit cheesy and that there isn’t enough Metal sounding material on offer. When you are listening to album highlights like the amazing ‘Ghost In The Ruins’ or ‘Believe’ however, you probably won’t regret purchasing this record. It is definitely an interesting album and it grows a lot on repeat listens. I’d definitely recommend it as long as ballads and concept albums aren’t absolute anathema to you.

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1457 days ago
GREAT BAND !!!

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