By CRAIG HAMMONS
Human Drama and Bar Sinister are a perfect match of artist and venue. Human Drama has played there many times in the past but tonight’s show was going to be special as it would be the first local show since bringing the Human Drama back to life.
After playing a show in Mexico City in 2012, which was a huge success, they decided to do a 30-year reunion there in 2015. They released a single “The Liar Inside” to accompany the reunion concert and from there it led to a brilliant new album Broken Songs for Broken People. It would be the first time we would hear these new songs live and see the band we have missed for so long.
The evening started with Resin, a one-woman DJ who brings her electronic beats of darkness and cultured melodies into the heads of the willing. Her sensual vocals accented each number with just the right amount of flavor. Resin is the brainchild of Nikola Antonucci, originally from Prague. She played some songs from her new album Fidget, which I highly recommend. She infused her passion into these songs and delivered an expressive experience full of beauty, rock and electronica to the crowd.
The clock struck midnight and the stage was set for the return of Human Drama. As the members took the stage we all cheered with anticipation of what we were about to witness. Opening strong with “I Could Be a Killer” it was obvious that Johnny Indovina and the band were here to give us what we have been missing. Human Drama led by the mighty Johnny Indovina got in the first punch and by the time I got up they hit us with another fan favorite “A Million Years.” These are beautifully crafted songs delivered live by musicians who know their craft and let their talent shine.
Johnny welcomed everybody back and was sincerely overwhelmed by the response of the crowd. Some of which went all the way back to days of The Scream Club of the ’80’s where Sisters of Mercy, TSOL and 45 Grave got their start.
As for the new songs, Human Drama played “Rain on Me,” off Broken Songs for Broken People. They followed with another new song “I Cannot Care,” which fit in nicely with the songs of Human Drama past. Johnny sings with such passion and clarity that you can actually take in the lyrics and let the music absorb them into your mind. Human Drama then reached back in to their catalog to play a track called “As Love Comes Tumbling” from their splendid album Songs of Betrayal Part I. It is such an emotional song I could almost feel my heart breaking. Johnny’s vocals are breaths of truthful air releasing the pain of the lyrics and showing the honestly of the man who wrote them.
Before Human Drama took a break in time they released a powerful album called Cause and Effect. They played a genuinely touching song off that album called “Quiet Desperation” with lyrics “we live, we breath, we walk and talk and love in quiet desperation.” This songs transcends human emotions we all share today. They then slipped in another new song called “Like This One” before going into a classic Human Drama song called “Death of an Angel.” This was a very uplifting moment and touched each individual listener. While the emotional energy was still riding high they closed the night out with a powerful version of a Leonard Cohen song called “Who By Fire” based on a Hebrew prayer.
After leaving the stage they were brought back by a thunderous round of applause. Johnny then got down in front of the stage and sung his heart out on “Loves Way” a heartfelt song with the lyrics “to your eyes I sing this song.” Johnny came down to our level and looked us each in the eye as he sang. It was a powerful bond of band and audience. They evening ended with “Broken Songs for Broken People” the title track of the new album. Human Drama are now off for a tour of Mexico who has embraced them and understand their depth and legacy. But for the rest of us they shall remain our favorite band that we can call our own and share with those who active ears still seek redemption.