Human Drama
Momentos en el Tiempo
~reviewed by Jezebel

Johnny Indovina is, to me, one of the most amazing and insightful songwriters in this genre. His way of twisting, testing and turning a phrase into a lyrical delight is something which should be cherished. 

This live album showcases this in a raw, innocent and stripped down way. His scratchy, yet in the same way, clear and focussed voice works through many of his well known and some not well known works. "Death of An Angel" has always been a beautiful song for me, so poignant, so lush in its sadness, but is brought forward even more with this live version. "Tired" understated pulse is now more hypnotic in this scaled down version. (and I love that "yeah" at the end….just so damn sexy)

"Skin" starts delicately, seductively and yet again, innocently. "When all was simple, When nothing could penetrate my skin," gorgeous lyrics, whispered tragically. "When frowns stranger than smiles." This song of a time lost, an innocent lost, the child-like wonder of the world lost is so simply given over to the audience, yet the depth of the loss being so complex, is understood. For me it has always had a bit of a mantra "Let me grow in a world of childhood innocence" - let me continue to feed my inner child milk and cookies and yet grow and mature. Let me be in a place where that is okay and safe, and "nothing can penetrate my skin."

"Fascination and Fear" - once again a scaled down version (okay - all of the versions on this album are scaled down, acoustic and solo) takes on so much more. "I can almost feel your heart beating, see confusion in eyes so clear, the line between fascination and fear." Fascination is when you will explore, fear is when you run away. The line between taking that step towards something or running away. Again, the tragedy of the song, the fact that he knows he will not get what he deserves, the object of this song will never be able to cross that line. He will "never be satisfied."

"As Love Comes Tumbling Down" and "The Silent Dance" are lovely songs in which Johnny showcases the gorgeous voice that he has when it is true and clear and not doing his sexy whispering vocals (which he does well, believe you me). It's strong, powerful and surprisingly, young sounding. I do not mean to infer that Johnny is an old man, but it has a soft young richness in it that is in juxtaposition to his normal presentation of voice which sounds of wisdom, maturity and experience.

"Yesterday is Here" is a Tom Waits song and to be honest, you can hear the influence of that voice and style, but somehow, it has been Indovina-ed at the same time. "It is Fear" gets a fresh new arrangement and sounds lovely. It's slower and less passionate and in some ways more aptly describes fear. Horror to me has always been loud and in your face,  fear, on the other hand,  is sneaky and quiet and furtive. And this song is just that. 

"Can't Cry Hard Enough" is a gorgeous, none Johnny Indovina written song and again you can sense the change and yet, his talent is able envelope a song and make it sound as if it came from his own pen and heart. And again - this is an offering which showcases his gorgeous voice without as much whispering.

"Forever"'s new arrangement makes it more of a song for lover's and for those that know this is "it." "Your Fire" is new to me and I believe that it is a new favourite. 

We end with "This Tangled Web," a constant favourite of HD fans. And it's arrangement doesn't add much to the song, but it is still a lovely song with lyrics that are touching and evocative. "You can wrap your arms around the wind, within lies the reasons for this tangled web we weave."

Okay - bad parts. There has to be bad parts, right????? Okay - the packaging is confusing. It's not a jewel case, but one the cardboards ones which would be fine if it opened like most do, kind of folding out. This had a tray that slides out, revealing only half the cd, which you then have to manoeuvre out. Great idea, but it's just a bit clumsy. Because of that packaging, there is mot much space for information and what is there seems cramped. I would have loved to know which songs were recorded where. We are only given a list of the locations. 

Otherwise…another prized possession of mine. A Human Drama/Johnny Indovina album. What more can a girl ask for???

Track Listing:
1. Mr. Storyteller
2. Death of An angel
3. Tired
4. My Skin
5. Fascination and Fear
6. As Loves Come Tumbling Down
7. The Silent Dance
8. Yesterday is Here
9. It is Fear
10. Can't Cry hard Enough
11. Forever
12. Your Fire
13. Sad I Cry
14. This Tangled Web

Human Drama is:
Johnny Indovina


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