Human Drama's proper first came to wider attention via the heavily-hyped "Scream scene" of the mid-'80s, referring to the noted underground goth metal club that helped bring Guns N' Roses and Jane's Addiction to wider attention. Human Drama contributed a song, "Wave of Darkness," to the 1987 collection Scream: The Compilation, which led to a major label deal shortly thereafter with RCA. 1989 saw the release of a taster EP, Hopes Prayers Dreams Heart Soul Mind Love Life Death, and later that year a full album, Feel, both products of recording sessions in Wales and both accomplished enough but rather strident and overbearing. Indovina concluded after release that RCA wasn't doing enough in terms of promotion, making a leap to the small but worthy Triple X label, where he has stayed ever since.
The next major Human Drama release was a masterwork and still for many the best effort by the band still, 1992's The World Inside, a lengthy and, unlike Feel, much more focused and tender effort that deserved the heavy acclaim it won. A solo performance of various cover songs by Indovina at the album's release party inadvertently suggested the next Human Drama album — 1993's Pin-Ups, an open tribute to David Bowie's album of the same name, being a collection of remakes of various sources of inspiration. A move to New York City accompanied a temporary co-release stint on the noted Projekt label, resulting in two further mid-decade releases — 1994's self-titled EP, especially noted for its reworking of Feel's epic "The Waking Hour," and 1995's Songs of Betrayal, an extended meditation on the theme that was later re-released as two separate discs with extra tracks.