Handful of Rain

       What could be considered the first Jon Oliva's Pain album, Handful of Rain was the first album released after the untimely death of Jon's brother and Savatage lead guitarist Criss Oliva. While the liner notes state otherwise, the album is pretty much just Jon. He plays all instruments except lead guitar, where Alex Skolnik was brought in, and Zak Stevens comes in to sing most of the songs.

       There are three super awesome songs on this album: Chance-- which is one of the best showcases of 5 part countermedley that Savatage does so well, Alone You Breathe-- the tribute to Criss that completes the third leg of the trilogy with When the Crowds are Gone and Believe, and the title track-- which is a great example of the other thing Savatage does best, sing about redemption.

        This is not my favorite Savatage album (that honor goes to Wake of Magellan) but it is a solid offering.