- Machine Messiah 10:27
- White Car 1:21
- Does It Really Happen? 6:34
- Into the Lens 8:31
- Run Through the Light 4:39
- Tempus Fugit 5:14
About the album
Drama is the tenth studio album by Yes, and was released in 1980. It is their only album with Geoff Downes and without Jon Anderson until 2011’s Fly from Here, and is also the only Yes album to feature Trevor Horn on vocals. It is the last album the band produced before disbanding, and reforming again to record 90125 under a different lineup in 1982.
The album peaked at #2 in the UK charts, however it was the first album to not reach the Top 10 in the US since The Yes Album in 1971. The US tour was a success, however, whereas the UK was a failure with fans disappointed at Horn’s inability to match Anderson’s high vocals.
Following the departure of Anderson and Rick Wakeman, who both left in 1980 due to financial and artistic difference, Yes recruited Downes and Horn of The Buggles, who had recently had a #1 hit in the UK with Video Killed the Radio Star. The pair shared the same management with Yes and had been invited to sit in on rehearsals, before being asked to join the band shortly afterwards.
Although all songs on the album are credited to all members of the band, Into the Lens and White Car are essentially Buggles compositions. Does It Really Happen?, Run Through the Light, and Tempus Fugit were developed by Chris Squire, Steve Howe, and Alan White, before being joined by Horn and Downes, who added lyrics. Machine Messiah was another Buggles creation, but had significant input from Squire, Howe, and White. Other songs penned for this album, but not released, include Fly from Here, which was performed live and eventually expanded into the title track of the 2011 album of the same name.
Following a brief tour, the band split in December, 1980. Howe and Downes went on to form Asia with Carl Palmer and John Wetton, and Horn began a successful career as a producer. The band reformed in 1982, with Anderson on vocals again, however he refused to perform any tracks from Drama on subsequent tours.
The artwork for Drama again features a painting by Roger Dean, and is the first Yes album he was commissioned for in six years. It features black cats chasing a bird, with a large white iceberg in the background.
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