Unruly Child - Big Blue World

Unruly Child Big Blue World cover
Unruly Child
Big Blue World
Frontiers Music srl
Unruly Child has been a band to which vocalist Marcie Free has returned time and again since their 1992 debut (mostly in the downtime from other projects). Back with their original line up since 2010 (but active as a core triad for the most part) they’re now up to the forth release since their reunion. Somehow while not as instantly impressive as the band’s earlier works, this album is still governed by the main principles of their overall sonic essence.
Opener “Living in Someone Else’s Dream”, which was the first sample from the album, is a pleasant musically uplifting number, with a lyric that tries to warn of becoming too tied up in pleasing others to the point of losing one’s self.
“All Over the World” is a funkier number, a playful mid-tempo, with some nice shifts but a chorus that’s rather mediocre.
“Dirty Little Girl” has some sultry tones and a transitional sound that owes as much to 80s hair metal as much to 90s melodic sensibilities.
“Breaking the Chains” takes a bit of an acoustic break and while it’s easy going and almost folksy, it builds up to a big chorus, which makes with sustained guitars that form up a lead later on, that makes it almost as good as anything on the debut, which is indeed a tall order.
“Are These Words Enough” is also largely acoustic, but it’s a lot tamer, as it doesn’t quite explode, instead dwelling in a melancholic & bittersweet threshold.
“Will We Give up Today” is not vastly different soundwise, but it’s a little more “up-tempo” and quite uplifting lyrically and overall.
“Beneath a Steady Rain” is an intimate piano ballad, which begets a guitar solo past the third minute; a very elegant and excellent track overall, despite never reaching some great climax.
“The Harder They Fall” begins with the whole Winston Churchill well-known speech to develop in a typical 80s AOR number, which could have enjoyed placement in some relevant soundtrack from that era.
Speaking of 80s… “Down and Dirty” flows in very much the same way, an 80s vibe, sultry mid-tempo number that however doesn’t go the extra mile.
“The Hard Way” is probably one of the more uptempo/uplifting numbers as it keeps going after it’s quite dazzling intro, with verses that develop into an unfinished, broken chorus that however seems to work well enough.
Lastly, the Japanese fans are treated to a totally acoustic and more laid back (different arrangement) version of “Are These Words Enough”. Its overall vibe is not significantly different, but its arrangement makes it sound a little less melancholic than the original version.
Overall, a pretty solid album by these old timers that keep sounding elegant and melodic through the ages. Worthwhile of your time and attention…