Dr. Butcher

Dr. Butcher

Dr. Butcher's debut (and the only one until now) CD was a very hard piece […]
By Michael Dalakos
April 24, 2005
Dr. Butcher - Dr. Butcher album cover

Dr. Butcher's debut (and the only one until now) CD was a very hard piece of work to track down. The first print vaporized into thin air (not that it was printed in 10.000 copies or something) and for the last 5-6 years it was impossible to be retrieved mostly through mail orders etc. Black Lotus Records has managed not only to make a deal with the members of Dr. Butcher but also to add a lot of extra material in this re-release.
Dr. Butcher is actually the brainchild of Jon Oliva (Vocals & Keyboards) and Chris Caffery, both well known in the Metal scene for their works through Metal legends Savatage. Their debut CD was roughly released 10 years ago (can't recall by which label back then) on a limited number of prints, totally lacking distribution in the U.S.A., the members' home country! During a period where Savatage started turning into more of a Broadway act rather than a Metal band Dr. Butcher brought in the foreground the heavier side of Savatage's members.  
Dr. Butcher's debut album can't be considered superior to most of Savatage's Metal releases. God forbid it is not better than Gutter Ballet or Streets. Still it is a very good Metal album by musicians that never seem to get rid of the Metal virus in their veins. At times it sounds as a modern approach to the mid period of Savatage. It definitely contains some killer tunes like The Altar and Seasons Of The Witch but it also contains some average moments. Jon Oliva kicks some serious ass with his performance while Chris Caffery proves more than ever he was not just a supporting member of Savatage.
As an addition to the original material Dr. Butcher comes with a bonus CD containing five more songs and a brand new artwork. Among the desert of useless re-releases Dr. Butcher stands out proudly like an oasis. This album reminds to all of us what Savatage could have sounded if Paul O' Neil never had intervened in the band's music. Don't get me wrong: with Paul Savatage have released many good albums but personally I would have preferred the band followed a road closer to what was started with Gutter Ballet. Fans of Savatage invest without hesitation, fans of melodic Heavy Metal give the chance to yourself to at least check it out.

8 / 10


"Dr. Butcher" Track-listing:

Disc 1

The Altar
Don't Talk To Me
Seasons Of The Witch
Reach Out And Torment Someone
The Chair
Innocent Victim
The Picture's Wild
Lost In The Dark
I Hate, You hate, We All Hate!!!
All For One... None For All

Disc 2

Inspecter Highway
Born Of The Board
Help! Police?

Dr. Butcher Lineup:

Tracks 1 - 11:
Jon Oliva - Vocals
Chris Caffery - Guitars & Bass
Jon Osborn - Drums & Bass

Track 12:
Jon Oliva - Vocals
Chris Caffery - Guitars
Dave Z - Bass
Jeff Plate - Drums
Paul Morris - Piano

Tracks 13 - 16:
Jon Oliva - Vocals
Chris Caffery - Guitars
Hal Patino - Bass
Reno Rojas - Bass
Brian Gregory - Bass
Gene Barnett - Drums
Jon Osborn - Drums

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