Bruce Sudano (from the album 21st Century World)
Staying true to form with his prior musical projects, Bruce Sudano exhibits his ability to bring the realities of our modern world to light with 21st Century World, his latest album release. Starting off the album with “Your World Now”, Bruce Sudano passes the torch of change to a new generation lit with his hopes of a better tomorrow. The next track in the album’s opening trilogy, “It Ain’t Cool”, mirrors today’s uneasy political climate with commentary on the greed driven moral decay of society in general as we are warned to stay ever vigilant. The third piece comes as “Charade” addresses our new-found age of shallowness and self-absorption with the advent of social media, allowing the internet to define who we are rather than our true character.
Bruce Sudano laments the hypocrisy of organized religions that conduct themselves in a hateful and self-serving way with “True Believer” as “Common Sense” urges us to just use the song title to bring about change as the tune shows that certain things should not have to be explained. An edge is added to the bluesy flavor of “Bat Shit Crazy” as its story delivers a tongue in cheek depiction of that person we have all seen passing through our days. A dark tale of shattered love is told in “When Cinderella Dies” as a relationship goes from bright and beautiful to a tangled mess, asking a question in clever phasing with ‘who does she become when Cinderella dies?’. “Talking ‘bout a Revolution” uses its narrative to spell out the current plight of the poor as the whispers of the down trodden gain strength to the building inevitability of resistance and revolt. I particularly like the cool mellow vibe carrying the important message of change in 21st Century World. My take away from “Analyzing Stars” is that we often toil in our minds with the complexities of life and forget that the answers many times are right in front of us embodied in those that we love and those who love us. Bruce Sudano offers a final track for 21st Century World with “Coney Island Days”, a fitting conclusion to a well-crafted journey through the album’s songs. The trials of adulthood tempered by the warm and haunting memory of youth and the carefree times of the era of innocence as Bruce provides an answer to show us the way back.
The overall theme of 21st Century World at first seemed dark and foreboding. After a few listens, I realized that the album is a vehicle for telling how things are now and the way they can be given proper attention and corrective action. I found it to be very poetic with thoughtful lyrics and phrasing, and would encourage listeners to digest the full work track by track. Bruce Sudano has shown off his writers ‘chops’ in this piece and leaves listeners looking forward to more insights from his songwriting with future releases. By J. Alan Taylor