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DRAMA

Symphonic Prog • France


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Drama biography
Each time I had a chance to listen a French Symphonic band was satisfied with the music and musicianship, in this case the musicianship is as good as ever, but the music is less than inspired in their first album, improves in the second and satisfies in the third.

In their beginnings they tried unsuccessfully to re-create the spirit of the 70's but without inspiration is not much what you can accomplish but they improved with the pass f the years..

The band was formed in the mid 90's in Rouen - France and in 1995 they release their first self titled album with Eric Azhar in the guitars, Jean-François Duboc playing bass, Laurent Guilhot the drummer, Richard Langlois in the keys and Jean-Marc Leclerc adds additional percussion, in track four.(4).

There are a few things this guys should know, not everybody is able to play in the Genesis style and be successful, good instrumental debut but still it was evident something was missing and IMO it was ambition.

For their second release "Flying through the 21st Century" (1998), Jean-Marc Leclerc and Richard Langlois leave the band so Eric Azhar takes the keyboards and they recruit a vocalist named Louis de Fusco.

In the first album the main problem is the lack of ambition, well they went to the other extreme, still keeping the main Genesis influence, they add ethnic influences from Africa, Asia and even the opener named "La Magna Carta" with bagpipes, maybe they should stick to one sound and stop wandering, but still musically is a big evolution.

Now the problem is the high pitched vocalist de Fusco, they should have remained as an instrumental band, the guy really wasn't in the level for the band, the consequence was evident, the critics were devastating but they keep going.

In the year 2000 DRAMA was invited to Baja Prog where along with AFTER CRYING, ECLAT, ISILDURS BANE and PALLAS received the bet critics, surely their sound was already improving more.

In the year 2005, DRAMA surprises us with a their album called "Stigmata of Changes" with a completely different lineup formed by Azhar (Who claims back the guitar) and Duboc from the original formation plus a new keyboardist Ralph Adam and of course a new vocalist named Yvon Lucas.

The change is for good, Lucas is far better than his predecessor, his voice is soft and gentle but serves perfectly for their new material and Adam's keyboards are pretty decent, heavily influenced by Genesis and Pink ...
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  • Taj Mahal Flight over the Twenty-First Century, 1998

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DRAMA discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

DRAMA top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.88 | 17 ratings
Drama
1995
3.44 | 18 ratings
Flight over the Twenty-First Century
1998
3.40 | 16 ratings
Stigmata of Change
2005

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DRAMA Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Drama by DRAMA album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.88 | 17 ratings

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Drama
Drama Symphonic Prog

Review by maryes

5 stars Due to the small number of quotations (only 8) and only 2 reviews, I have obligation of agreeing with the initial words of the review written by The PROG REVIEWER - psarros, that says "DRAMA still remain an underground name of the modern symphonic rock scene", increasing that I find pitiful that this French band (especially, in this first studio disk) it is so unknown of the community of the progressive rock fans ! Although I have to recognize, that certain moments of the disk provoke a sensation of the type " I,ve already heard something similar to that! ", the work is brilliant and full of memorable moments and extremely captivating melodies (just as the initial melody of the guitar in the track 2 "Jettatura" and the magistral opening of the track 3 "Vertigo" in the Rick Wakeman's style keyboards), with themes full of energy and vibration and unexpected breaks, and still the musical landscape of the tracks 5 & 6 "África I & II, that send us to world music, the "Flamenco" music style of the track 7 "Jacaranda" and the final track "Excalibur" with a bass guitar in the Chris Squire's style. And in spite of such rich and intricate melodies , it is a work that gets to please to the listener soon in the first audition. My rate is 5 stars!!!

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 Drama by DRAMA album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.88 | 17 ratings

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Drama
Drama Symphonic Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Reaching twenty years of career,DRAMA still remain an underground name of the modern symphonic rock scene.Found in 1990 in Rouen and led by charismatic guitarist Eric Azhar,they were discovered by Musea Records and released their self-titled debut in mid-90's.

The band had no vocalist,so ''Drama'' was an all instrumental effort based on the majestic combination between Azhar's guitars and Richard Langlois' modern keys.Unforunately the album suffers from a rather mediocre production,but the good thing is that most of the tracks are more than interesting with nice orchestrations and captivating melodies.Musically I can place the band in the neo/symponic category with hints of CAMEL, IQ and JADIS dominating the album,as Azhar's guitar work alternates between distorted melodic passages and complex breaks.However the total abscence of vocals,the extended instrumental parts and the (often) grandiose approach of Langlois' floating synths makes DRAMA more symphonic-sounding than any of the above bands.The use of vibes and percussion by Jean-Marc Leclerc helps the band adding a slightly-detected ethnic feeling in some of the tracks,accompanied by a couple of catchy guitar melodies.

Overall the album is a real winner, regarding good instrumental progressive rock, with plenty of memorable material, dreamy soundscapes and deep atmospheres.Strongly recommended, especially to fans of intricate melodic prog and musically comparable to other instrumental melodic prog bands like TEMPUS FUGIT, DOGMA and CHANCE.

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 Stigmata of Change  by DRAMA album cover Studio Album, 2005
3.40 | 16 ratings

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Stigmata of Change
Drama Symphonic Prog

Review by Prog-jester
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Great artwork, by the way.

I don't know how much Symphonic they use to be. What I hear now is Prog-Related New-Age-like Neo-prog, reminding me of SATELLITE a bit or H's era MARILLION a lot. First few songs are even very ENIGMA-like but with DIRE STRAITS-like soloing.Then more rocky songs appear,but most of the time this one sounds pretty mild and predictable. Besides if you are allergic to ELECTRO-DRUMS, I won't recommend this album to you - it is overfilled with them! Good amd melodic record while NOT exactly PROG (in my book).Enjoyable for few listenings and as a Prog-Background-Music if you wish one. I gave it 3 stars mainly due to good guitar solos and some highly enjoyable spots thrown across the album. Recommended to easy-listening Neo-Prog/Modern Prog fans mostly.

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 Flight over the Twenty-First Century by DRAMA album cover Studio Album, 1998
3.44 | 18 ratings

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Flight over the Twenty-First Century
Drama Symphonic Prog

Review by huge

3 stars Well thought out and delivered resulting in a good second outing. Not on the 'A' list as yet but comfortable on the 'B' list at present if you follow my meaning.

The rather annoying use of electronic drums and drum programming spoil the album, it tends to sound too accurate and therefore nonhuman. The other instrumenation flows pleasingly but not with the panache that one craves for, all rather anticlimatic it never quite reaches the heights that it ought to...

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 Drama by DRAMA album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.88 | 17 ratings

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Drama
Drama Symphonic Prog

Review by Marcelo
Prog Reviewer

3 stars The modern sound and some sensation of "I 'd listened to it before" are -maybe- negative points, but compositions are really enjoyable and melodies very nice.

All instrumental, the sound is mostly symphonic with ethnic touches sometimes. There aren't amazing moments nor surprises, but it's a good album after all.

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 Flight over the Twenty-First Century by DRAMA album cover Studio Album, 1998
3.44 | 18 ratings

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Flight over the Twenty-First Century
Drama Symphonic Prog

Review by lritzel

3 stars the Singer like to one from Yes, the music at times very melodic and similar to some stuff from Pink Floyd. I specially like the guitar work on songs like 'Taj Mahal'. For me always when there is just instrumental i like it best, the singer with his high pitched voice is nerving over time. Still a great band i must say and the cover art is kind of ... how to say: classy, ellegant typic French i guess. Good luck the singer does not have a too bad French accent when singing in English. Certainly a band that will find some Fans and perhaps I would need to listen to it more and would like it even better.

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