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Raise The Curtain (digipak)

4.2 out of 5 stars 49 customer reviews

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Audio CD, July 2, 2013
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Editorial Reviews

JON OLIVA'S PAIN and SAVATAGE mastermind Jon Oliva has completed recording his first-ever solo album. The CD, which contains ideas collected over the course of the last four or five years and also compositions by Jon`s brother Criss (Savatage), was tracked in winter 2012 at Morrisound Studios in Tampa, Florida with producer Tom Morris. Jon handled laying down nearly all the instrument tracks and vocals himself as well as playing drums on three songs. Oliva stated about his decision to record a solo album: `I've got some weird ideas that I wanna try and I've got some time to do it. I don't want do just 'another' JON OLIVA'S PAIN record. I've done four of those already. I wanna do something different. I have some material that I've wanted to put out for a while...`

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Raise The Curtain
  2. Soul Chaser
  3. Ten Years
  4. Father Time
  5. I Know
  6. Big Brother
  7. Armageddon
  8. Soldier
  9. Stalker
  10. The Witch
  11. Can't Get Away
  12. The Truth (bonus track)


Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 2, 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: AFM Records
  • ASIN: B00CHEL920
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #110,132 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Scot Kaeff on July 2, 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Being a Savatage fan from way, way back, my expectations were in the middle ground. I adore Savatage and really dig most everything they ever did, both with Criss Oliva and after his untimely passing. I love Chris Caffery's stuff and love Circle II Circle, too. Pretty much everything along the Sava-tree is cool by me, but to greater or lesser degrees of listenability, including the Jon Oliva's Pain project.

This disc, though, ostensibly Jon Oliva left to his own devices, raises the bar. The production, the songwriting, the musicianship, from top to bottom is top notch. The Oliva screams are there, the guitar playing is well above average and in a great many spots I daresay that Criss would be smiling at his brother's work and how well done it is.

I can't say enough really. Surprised? To be sure, a little bit. Happy? For Jon, yes. Yes, indeed.

Well worth the investment to buy this album.
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Format: Audio CD
If you are a fan of early Savatage and the Oliva Brothers then this album is a must. Most of this album was written before the death of Criss Oliva, around the time of "A Handful of Rain". The songs and album were finished by Jon Oliva as a wonderful tribute to his brother. It is my belief that Criss would have loved this album.
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Format: MP3 Music
I got this album having no expectations, because Dr.Butcher, JOP, TSO and Savatage mastermind had different kind of styles for music and this Oliva release made me think it would be different, especially Jon Oliva is playing most of the instruments alone! Which a king himself could only do!

Listening for the whole album for more gave me a feeling that this is a Savatage album more than anything else. It has the Heavy, Story, feeling sides all combined.

Jons voice is as strong as it gets.
Starting with Raise the Curtain as an Intro, getting into darker, heavier Soul Chaser, into Sadder deeper "I know" Ending with "Can't get away" This album deserves to be called a Masterpiece.
Thank you Jon for giving us the pleasure to listen to your magic more and more.
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I'm a big fan of Savatage. This album is just great. Great guitar & vocals are a must in anything I buy.Raise The Curtain did not dissapoint. This album brings you back to the good old days of Savatage.A must buy for anyone that likes melodic hard rock & heavy metal.
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Judging by the variations in reviews, Raise the Curtain may well be an acquired taste. Jon Oliva, in case you don't know, is the mastermind behind Savatage, Trans Siberian Orchestra, and Jon Oliva's Pain. In purchasing this record, some fans may be looking for Savatage-like music, which is to say operatic metal--Hall of the Mountain King, Gutter Ballet, Poets and Madmen, and all of that metal goodness. I would argue that Raise the Curtain is quite Savatage-like, though wrapped in a slightly different context. This is seventies progressive music, which I appreciate, being a fan of Kansas, Yes, King Crimson, and others--not to mention the bands influenced by this era such as Opeth, Dream Theater, and Porcupine Tree. I would say this: if you're looking for metal only, you may be slightly disappointed by Raise the Curtain. After all, there is no accounting for taste. But if you want to spread your musical wings, this is a marvelous record. It's becoming one of my all-time favorites, and I think it's every bit as good as the classic stuff Jon did with Savatage. That's right, folks. Hall of the Mountain King. Gutter Ballet. Every bit is great. But much different.

I'm not going to do a track-by-track rundown other than to say that there's not a dull song on the album. My two personal favorites are "I Know," which is a dark morose track, and "Can't Get Away," which is the opposite--upbeat, bluesy, groovy. Jon Oliva is a musician with one hell of a resume and he can seemingly do any style of music and do it well. If Raise the Curtain is any indication, let's hope that Jon does more solo work in the future. This is a gem from a real musical talent.
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This is Jon's best work since Tage Mahal. Raise The Curtain is reminiscint of Savatage recordings. It does leave me wondering how it would have sounded like if Chris had been able to contribute the leads especially on the song I Know. Other outstanding songs include Father Time,Soldierin(nice touch with the flute)& the catchy hooks in Can't Get Away. Almost forgot the Savatage like songs Ten Years & The Witch. Not a bad song on this CD. Highly recommended for Savatage fans or just anyone who appreciates good rock music.
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2013 album Raise the Curtain from Jon Oliva is a varied bunch of tunes. Available in a couple of versions including a digi-pack release with a bonus twelfth track entitled The Truth it is very much a body of songs that span many years. In brief liner notes Jon indicates that a number of songs hark all the way back to before the advent of Savatage, the band he fronted for many years. His deceased brother Criss Oliva gets a number of writing credits here and in fact the liner notes point out that this is the last of the music he had left that he and Criss had ever written together. So there is very much a labour of love going on here in some respects.

Opening track Raise the Curtain is fairly repetitive and aimed more at being an introduction to the album rather than a stand alone track in its own right. The rest of the tunes run the gamut from the sort of sentimentality that we’ve seen from Oliva before, one example being Soldier. Others are more full bodied and include a horn section and chunks of piano, an example of this being the rather eclectic The Witch. For all its horn section the vocals of Oliva remind the listener of some of his more visceral performances back in those halcyon Savatage days. This sort of sneering vocal delivery is also used a on a few other numbers too.

Main personnel here are Jon Oliva himself doing all the guitars, Christopher Kinder on percussion and Dan Fasciano tinkling the ivories. In fact Fasciano gets a range of writing credits on the album. Production values are … well you don’t really notice them. The songs certainly do breath a bit however which is as you’d expect given some the lighter tunes here and the ballad style material. Oliva and Tom Morris did the production and Morris also appears to have done the bulk of the engineering.
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