To be fair, Jon was never the strongest singer. His best songs to me were the more plaintive ones where his weaker voice fit the song better, or later in Savatage's career when he played the "evil" characters with his raspy voice.
Nowadays if you listen to the newest Jon Oliva's Pain albums, he's actually developed a fair set of pipes when he decides to use them.
Yeah, Jon Oliva's Pain is a fantastic project. I think you hit the nail on the head when you described his voice and the "evil character" dynamic. All that said, Ray Gillen is a tremendously talented vocalist and it's a shame he didn't get a chance to use his voice on other projects before his time.
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