2. Death Rides a Black Horse
5. Living on the Edge
6. Looking for Nothing
7. The Evil Within
8. Winter Haven
9. I Fear You
Release Date: 19 February 2010 – AFM Records
The Mountain King is back! Since Savatage have been separated, Jon Oliva has managed to express his ideas through his personal band Jon Oliva’s Pain as he has realized that Trans Siberian Orchestra is not the band which could continue the legacy of Savatage. From the first album Tage Metal till the new Festival the band has made great improvement, but there are still some things which need to be developed more. Jon proves again that he wants his band to be heard like Savatage, which is something we like, but also he tries to add and some different things.
Just like the previous album in which Jon remastered a Savatage song, he did the same in Festival and this time he added and a riff which his brother Chris wrote during the recordings of Streets. Jon used that riff in the first song “Lies” which is the best track of the album and the Savatage song is “Living on the edge of time” from the first album Sirens, a song that Jon somehow changed it. Both of the songs are heavy with some others like “Death rides a black horse”, “The evil within” and “I fear you”. During the song “Afterglow”, there is a part by which you may be surprised and that because Jon plays Jazz on his piano, but it’s good and not something that destroys the song.
Jon since the period of Savatage has had a positive persistence of writing ballads and he did it in Festival too. He wrote two ballads “Looking for nothing” and “Now”. The fist is an acoustic ballad, full in melody, but the second one is not so good, is a song poor in lyrics and Jon characterized it as a ‘flou’ song. Except the song “Now” there is another weak moment in the album, the song “Festival” which I believe that something is missing from and this is the reason that it doesn’t offer me any pleasure just like the others songs do.
Festival is the darkest album that JOP have recorded and this because all the songs are based on dreams and nightmares that Jon had during the last years and he decided these unexpected good and bad thoughts to be the basic theme of the album.
Despite the two weak moments of the album and the production which could be one more click higher, Festival is a great album, better and more heavy than the previous. Savatage and many new heavy thoughts are in this album, so if you miss the above clues then listen to it and you will appreciate it a lot!!
Review by Dr. Feelgood
BUY THIS ALBUM: Festival (Ltd.Digi)