Friday, February 19, 2016

DRAMA-Breaking Away (1982)

ORIGINAL POSTING DATE: February 19, 2016

For the second night in a row, I find myself easing out the rest of my night with some easy-listening music. Actually, I had already eased out my day when I listened to this particular selection of easy-listening only a couple of days ago. That would be the Norwegian pop/rock band called DRAMA and their debut album entitled "Breaking Away". So with this, I can officially say I am 'breaking away' from my music addictions of the 90's and 2000's while I return to my favorite decade to indulge in even more music addictions! When DRAMA was recommended to me some time ago, I did not expect that I would immensely enjoy three complete plays of "Breaking Away", and then be preparing for and eagerly looking forward to a fourth replay! There is absolutely nothing 'dramatic' here about these DRAMA boys at all; when the curtains to this album slide open, they simply step up to the mic and put on an excellent show for the easy-listening audience. "Shady Lady" has gotta be THE most pleasant-sounding song about a 'shady lady' that I have ever heard! 'Who you trynna screw, shady lady?' That line from the main chorus says it all, but what captivated me was that classic soft rock/pop arrangement and the dreamy melody, plus the sweet, Beatles-esque vocals displayed by the DRAMA boys, which especially delight my ears when they join together in perfect harmony. From that moment forward, every song thereafter became another jewel to stash in my treasure chest of oldies pop gems. It was the great hook and their sublime vocalizing again that captivated me on the follow up, "Living On The Fault Line". Then there was the bittersweet selection, "I'll Recover Soon"—the bitter being the heartache while the sweet being the optimistic words of confidence and self-determination, backed by the smooth groove and more of that lovely harmony. "Six Hours To Go" is such a pleasant listen that you might indeed need six hours before you an call yourself getting it out of your system. I like the way this song sorta 'gallops' along with the warming, breezy melody. "Make Me Smile" surely made me smile and will most definitely turn frowns upside-down and fill an empty heart with pure gladness. They sure put on a charming show in these short three minutes—too short by my taste, as when the pitch goes up in the final movements, where I feel the song is start to really take off and soar, the song is already starting to fade out. Wonder if there's an extended version of this so that can smile for a bit longer..... I love the perky, dancey spunk on the fun, upbeat offering "Looking For My Future"; it really suits their then-youngish, boyish bubblegum pop style. One word means everything in the world to them on the sweet beauty that is Track #7's "Desire"; the harmony here is so breathtaking that I just had a 'desire' to hear more as the starry glow of the music radiated within me. "Fire And Ice" is something I have to highlight because I was impressed by the strong vocals of whichever one of the DRAMA boys is on lead here. Then just as this album begins so sublimely with "Shady Lady", it concludes just as sublimely with the even catchier title track (well, except for the word 'Daydreamer'). And the lyrics are a bit nicer this time, although there's still some sadness embedded within the words that speak about the girl and thesongwriter drifting further apart despite brighter days being upon them. Thirty minutes isn't nearly enough for me to enjoy this magical ride that is "Breaking Away". It's why I've continued to treat my ears to repeated playbacks.....and why it might be a long time before I've closed the curtains on these DRAMA boys for good:

1. Shady Lady
2. Living On The Fault Line
3. I'll Recover Soon
4. Six Hours To Go
5. Make Me Smile
6. Looking For My Future
7. Desire
8. Fire And Ice
9. How Does It Feel?
10. Daydreamer (Breaking Away)

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