Poets and Madmen

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Poets and Madmen
Poets and Madmen.jpg
Studio album by Savatage
Released April 3, 2001
Recorded 2000 – 2001
Genre Heavy metal
Progressive metal
Length 62:36
Label SPV/Steamhammer
Nuclear Blast Records
Producer Paul O'Neill
Jon Oliva
Savatage chronology
Poets and Madmen
Singles from Poets and Madmen
  1. "Commissar"
    Released: February 5, 2001
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars [1]

Poets and Madmen is the eleventh studio album by the heavy metal band Savatage, released in 2001. It was their last album before their 12-year hiatus, which lasted from 2002 to 2014. The album has a loose concept inspired by the career and death of journalist Kevin Carter, but has much less narrative in the lyrics than the previous two rock operas (Dead Winter Dead and The Wake of Magellan) penned by Paul O'Neill. Everything said in the album is fiction, except with regards to what is sung about Carter.[2] The album is also noted as it is the only Savatage album to not feature a title song from the album, although the title was taken from lyrics to the track "Symmetry" from the band's 1994 album, Handful of Rain.

The album was the first since Streets: A Rock Opera in 1991 to feature the band's original vocalist Jon Oliva on lead vocals for all songs after the amicable departure of Zachary Stevens. It is also the first Savatage album to have guitarist Chris Caffery playing the majority of the guitar solos. This is partly due to the departure of Al Pitrelli, who left to join Megadeth prior to the album's release. However, Pitrelli was credited with the outro of "Stay With Me Awhile," the main solo of "Morphine Child," the main solo of "The Rumor," and the first part of the main solo and the outro of "Commissar".[2] The United States bonus track "Shotgun Innocence" was originally a bonus track on the Japanese release of Edge of Thorns in 1993 and features Zachary Stevens on lead vocals, and the late Criss Oliva on guitar.

The album cover was drawn by Edgar Jerins, who was responsible for the covers of Dead Winter Dead and The Wake of Magellan.[3]

Track listing[edit]

All lyrics written by Paul O'Neill.

Original CD release
No. Title Music Length
1. "Stay with Me Awhile" Chris Caffery, Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 5:06
2. "There in the Silence" Chris Caffery, Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 4:57
3. "Commissar" Chris Caffery, Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 5:36
4. "I Seek Power" Chris Caffery, Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 6:03
5. "Drive" Chris Caffery, Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 3:17
6. "Morphine Child" Chris Caffery, Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 10:12
7. "The Rumor" Chris Caffery, Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 5:16
8. "Man in the Mirror" Chris Caffery, Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 5:56
9. "Surrender" Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 6:40
10. "Awaken" Chris Caffery, Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 3:23
11. "Back to a Reason" Jon Oliva, Paul O'Neill 6:10


Additional musicians[edit]

  • Bob Kinkel - additional keyboards & backing vocals
  • Al Pitrelli - additional lead guitars (featured on tracks "Stay With Me A While", "Commissar", "Morphine Child" & "The Rumor")
  • John West - backing vocalist
  • Zachary Stevens - lead vocals (Track 12 on US Bonus Edition only)
  • Criss Oliva - guitars (Track 12 on US Bonus Edition only)

Further Credits[edit]

  • Produced by Paul O'Neill
  • Co-produced by Jon Oliva
  • Engineered & Mixed by Dave Wittman
  • Assistant engineer: Darren Rapp, Ed Osbeck
  • Additional engineering: Bob Kinkel
  • Recorded and mixed at Soundtracks Studios
  • Overdubs at Studio 900, New York City
  • Mastered at the Master Cutting Room by Kevin Hodge
  • Studio managers: Jeff Thompson, Chris Rich, Ken Thornhill
  • Cover art: Edgar Jerins
  • Design: Deborah Lauren


  1. ^ Poets and Madmen at AllMusic
  2. ^ a b "Savatage FAQ, part 2". Savatage.com. Retrieved 2007-02-08. 
  3. ^ "Interview with Edgar Jerins". 

External links[edit]