Saturday, August 17, 2019

Unruly Child- Big Blue World (Frontiers)

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   After the band World Trade split up in the late 80s guitarist Bruce Gowdy and keyboardist Guy Allison decided to form another band with Mark Free (now Marcie Free) on vocals, former Hurricane drummer Jay Schellen and bassist Ricky Phillips who couldn't commit to the project because of the Coverdale Page album replaced by Larry Antonio. Settling on the name Unruly Child they signed with Interscope Records and under the guidance of Beau Hill went on to release their debut self-titled album, a melodic hard rock masterpiece that had everything going for it. Except for the year it came out,1992.

   The whole genre died, the band were dropped but continued over the years with different line-ups including current Foreigner vocalist Kelly Hansen on Waiting For The Sun in 1998. The resurgence of melodic rock in the early 2000s saw many bands return to their traditional sound or as markets opened up lead to full blown reformations and in 2010 the classic line up from the debut released Worlds Collide. Since then we've had Down The Rabbit Hole (2014), Can't Go Home (2017), a box set Reigning Frogs (2017) and last year a live album Unhinged Live From Milan featuring the majority of their debut album.

   Now we have Big Blue World featuring Marcie Free, Bruce Gowdy and Guy Allison. I was a fan of the last album Can't Go Home but found it a little guitar light in the mix, a little too polished. The guitars are definitely more in your face on this especially Down And Dirty, The Hard Way and cracking opener Living In Someone Else's Dream. Breaking The Chains is a great acoustic ballad but the highlight of the whole album for me is Beneath A Steady Rain featuring mostly Guy on piano and Marcie on vocals and sounds like something you would hear from Elton John and nothing from past Unruly Child albums.

   This is one of my favorite melodic hard rock albums of the year and I haven't stopped playing it. The songwriting is fantastic and the only downside to this is the band only recorded and released ten tracks. Now fingers crossed for some live shows, coming soon is my interview with Guy Allison all about this release.


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