The screams for a reunion of the legendary SAVATAGE become less and less. One reason for this definitely is JON OLIVA´S PAIN, the new band of Jon “Mountain King” Oliva, the mastermind/singer/keyboard player behind Savatage. In fact JON OLIVA`S PAIN offers what Savatage did in their glorious days; it´s all here: the master´s unmistakable voice, the classic yet unique songwriting and even evolvements and some experiments here and there.
JON OLIVA`S PAIN is now back with their fourth studio album “Festival”. A bombastic title for a bombastic record, indeed. Like the master announced it some time ago, “Festival” could be described as a mix of “Hall Of The Mountain King” (Savatage) and the second JON OLIVA`S PAIN album “Maniacal Renderings”. Epic compositions encounter with rough, heavy rockers, all melt together by Jon´s unique style of composing. After the more experimental last JOP album “Global Warning” from 2008, “Festival” is now more “basic” again. Less slow tracks, more metal. Expect Oliva´s special humour shine through at any time, displaying his view of the world today in his very own sarcastic way – as it used to be. But again you also find his other side, the helplessly romantic and pure. Drummer Chris Kinder comments: "Part of the staple JON OLIVA'S PAIN sound has become Jon's ability to change characters and voices at will and to create incredibly interesting, thought-provoking, passionate and downright insane vocal melodies. Producer Tom Morris and I have been pushing him to the edge (as he requested), and we have met that challenge with great enthusiasm and also a bit of joy watching him suffer...“
The storied career of Jon Oliva really began in 1981, when he and his brother Criss founded a band called Avatar, later changed to Savatage.
In the 1980´s and 1990´s Savatage became the epitome of sophisticated Heavy Metal. Albums like “Hall Of The Mountain King”, “Gutter Ballet” and “Streets - A Rock Opera” set new milestones in the history of Metal. After Savatage slowed down and it became obvious that another album would be out of reach, Jon founded a new band, JON OLIVA´S PAIN. The first JOP studio album “Tage Mahal” was released in 2004, followed by “Maniacal Renderings” (2006) and “Global Warning” (2008). Much to tremendous critical acclaim JON OLIVA´S PAIN became the only legitimate successor of Savatage, no wonder as mastermind Oliva here let his talents flow.
The musical genius Jon Oliva IS, was and has ever been the driving creative force behind Savatage. Now “Festival” marks the next step in the continuing legacy of the “Mountain King”. It´s once again a unique and unmatched piece of work by one of the scene´s last originals.