Coming off the heels of a stellar debut release, Kutless releases its sophomore disc Sea of Faces. Produced by Aaron Sprinkle, Sea of Faces is the type of disc to make a band's career. The discs rockers, like "Not What You See" and "Treason," are studio spit-shined. Sprinkles production touches throughout give the opus the legs to stride to the next level. While the band members seem completely at ease with the heavier cuts, they really shine on the mid-tempo and slow tunes. The title track utilizes piano and acoustic guitars to deliver a poignant cut with lyrics to match. "Perspectives" again finds the band cutting back during the verse while the chorus pinnacles into a rock nugget. When the band utilizes both electric and acoustic guitars, the songs really seem to come to life. Check out the sincerity on "All the Words" or the introspection on "It's Like Me." Sea of Faces is a rock masterpiece. Kutless has completely delivered the goods while retaining the charm possessed on its debut disc. This opus is well-written, well-presented, and musically rich throughout.
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Sea of Faces| Posted March 26, 2008
There's just something about Kutless I love. They don't create the most original music or even unique music. They don't have technically amazing musicians that separate them from the pack. Their vocalist, while having a strong voice, isn't the greatest thing since sliced bread. Hey, even their albums all kind of sound similar in structure and message. So why do I consistently love their music? Simply put, they have crafted songs that I can very much relate to and get wrapped up in. There always seems to be a song for something I'm going through and in Sea of Faces I find the most relative music to my life. Between subject matter speaking of losing hope at harsh trials, feeling insignificant in this world, finding the best angle to view life, and the brutal truth of what was done for my salvation. Through and through, Kutless are Christians and they aren't afraid to show it in their lyrics. Where some bands choose to be vague for album sales or to reach a larger audience, Kutless feels like pouring their hearts out and letting those who struggle in this walk of life be comforted. That commands a lot of respective from me because they show that they don't care what other people think. It's all coming from their soul.
Ok, so the message is obviously a huge plus to me. What about the music? Well, Kutless are a straight up rock band complete with worship pieces ('All the Words', 'Sea of Faces') among hard rock numbers ('Better For You', 'Let You In', 'Troubled Heart') filled with heavy guitar riffs and soaring vocals. I was also glad to see there was only one 10 second span of rapping, which I can't stand, but it's not enough to ruin the song like on their first CD. I particularly found 'Perspectives' to be a great message about viewing life with another lens instead of a depressing one. Too many bands nowadays (admittingly all secular, go figure) have depressing points of view on life and fail to see that life is what you make of it. 'Passion' just rips at the heart with the chilling imagery Sumrall uses in describing Jesus's crucifiction. He says, 'Nail pierced hands, they run iwth blood/A splitting brow forced by the thorns/His face is writhing with the pain.
Like I said, they don't strive to be original so much as to be truthful and real. People tend to stereotype Christians as 'hypocrites' based on the ones they know that mess up but no one is perfect. Kutless at least show that. They don't try and act perfect but rather that we all have shortcomings as well as strengths. Of their three albums I find this one to be the best. It's a bit short running at 35+ minutes but that could probably be a good thing. Any more songs might've been a little taxing on the attention span. I think this album is really benefited by a strong tracklist. The slower songs are perfectly placed between the heavy songs to change things up and keep me interested. What could make Kutless better? I could probably name a few things but all of which would take away from what they are trying to do. There's other bands to fill my need for technically amazing guitar work or epic progressive songs. Kutless does what they are made to do very well and there's not much else I can ask for.
Gems of this album are: 'Passion', 'Perspectives', 'Sea of Faces'
A Refreshingly Diffrent Sophomore Album| Posted August 01, 2007
Two odd things about Kutless come to mind when listening to 'Sea of Faces.' Before, they had sounded exactly like the secular band, 'Creed', but were fairly original in the Christian market. This time around, they sound absolutely nothing like their last previous grunge style, but a lot more like other Christian hard rock bands, such as Seventh Day Slumber and Thousand Foot Krutch. As if taking a cue from Skillet, Kutless appears to have completely changed itself as a band for a different album
But thankfully, they sound better. The tension charged 'Not What You See' opens the album strongly, followed by the piano laced rocker 'All Alone.' Immediately, you realize Kutless has expanded musically. No longer do the songs sound like variations of each other. 'Sea of Faces' a beautiful pop/rock ballad about God's love for us, with its energetic acoustics and clean electrics is a wild departure from the monotonous grungy tracks of the last record, as is the soft worship song, 'All of the Words.'
But Kutless doesn't go soft. 'Let You In', with its catchy intro riff and heavy chorus is return to heavier form, with the unnecessary hardcore screams at the end of each chorus. 'Troubled Heart' and 'Better For You' are hard but decent rockers. 'Passion' has the best lyrics of the album; 'Nail pierced hands run with blood/ a splitting brow forced by the thorns/ Your face is writhing with the pain...'
The song perfectly describes the paradox believers have in viewing the crucifixion; one of horror and of delight.
'Treason', my favorite track, has a heart pounding riff with some witty lyrics ('Tell me a reason why this isn't a treason'). And 'It's Like Me' is the most musically complex song, with different layers of guitars providing the background for Jon Sumrall's vocals to lament his habit of holding back the truth about Christ to unbelievers.
Although most of it has been done musically before, Kutless does it better than most, and doesn't fail in the lyrics area, where they remain honest and strong. Worth the money, and will provide a few good listens, as well as a few very memorable songs.
It took four years to find my favorite CD| Posted July 30, 2009
Back in 2004, I was browsing through a local music store and happened across Sea of Faces. I purchased it, listened to it a few times and put it on a shelf... "Meh"
Fast forward to early 2008,
my life changed, my taste in music changed and was going through my CD collection to listen to some stuff I hadn't heard in a while. In Sea of Faces went into the car CD changer and hit play. Out of all of the six CD's on that current rotation, Sea of Faces was the one that hit me the hardest. The music, the lyrics - everything just meshed with my life. While there isn't a bad song on the album, in my opinion, some of my favorites are "Not What You See," "All Alone," "Passion," and of course "Sea of Faces."
These five guys from Portland really know how to put music together in a meaningful way. Since that fateful CD rotation, I have acquired every one of Kutless's albums. I like that they aren't afraid to put the message of Christ into every one of their songs on all their albums. However, Sea of Faces is one of my favorite albums of my entire collection.
:]| Posted June 25, 2008
i love sea of faces.
everytime i hear that song it gives me the chills.
its very good.
i love kutless.
they have very good music.
it tells u something.
its not just abunch of musical notes and words.
Fond Memories| Posted March 25, 2008
This album is the soundtrack to a very fond time in my life. I saw Kutless on their Sea of Faces tour right before I went on my first mission trip. The song, "Sea of Faces" helped me through my last year of high school knowing God has something in store. This album shows the softer side of Kutless and reveals their heart for God. It's incredible!
Incredible Music, Incredible Message| Posted February 12, 2008
Simply put "Sea Of Faces" is a big step up from Kutless's self titled debut. Every song is well written and the band does a tremendous job on the music. All the tracks are solid but my favorite songs are: "Sea of Faces", "Passion", "All The Words", and "It's Like Me". Great message and great music, I highly recommend it.
Kutless Is Here To Stay| Posted January 27, 2008
Kutless releases their sophomore album Sea Of Faces and boy is it good. It's a bit mellow than their debut but this one is really good. Jon Micah Sumrall sounds really good on this album and all of the songs are great.