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The Sea Before Us

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Customer Reviews

Get this album, there

I have been playing this CD non-stop since I got it. Each track is very polished with lyrics that connect, like having dialogue. Unlike much of the music out there, Mark's material paints for you a picture of genuine places and times in our lives and relationships that we can all relate to. The songs are timeless, and at times fun and lighthearted and at times having just a hint of melancholy to keep them grounded – giving us the permission to reminisce, daydream and hope. A bitter-sweet, poignant invitation to how we move though the times of our lives, this album is a solid body of work.

Tumbleweed just might be my favorite new song of '09.

There's a big difference between contrived musical “emotion” and an artist who just plain makes you feel good. Mark Radcliffe's latest continues his path towards acoustic pop maturity with an effort that evokes the best moments thus far in this young artist's career. It's as though Chris Isaak's slightly more ironic cousin had come to town, popped open a guitar case, and given you a piece of his mind. The songs are elegant and the lyrics are undeniably catchy if ever so occasionally predictable. But what makes the whole thing so enjoyable is that Radcliffe’s songs never seem to get bogged down in his own personal travails or a need to engage in social pontificating. You'll find no brooding post-punk pathos here. Radcliffe's body of work is unapologetically melodic and unabashedly romantic. There's an unmistakable sweetness to it all, a regular guy singing about the regular things that guys think about... mostly, women. But the sweetness manages not to come off as cloying, thanks to the light touch of Radcliffe’s intelligently-written lyrics. In alternate moments, the album evokes flashes of the Eagles, Chris Isaak, Del Amitri, Crowded House, U2 and The Fray. There’s just a touch of bouncy, laid back 70s California innocence throughout, and the jangly piano and rhythm track are just enough to move things along and bring a richness to the songs without coming off as overly manufactured. The whole thing is lovely and just this one time, maybe it’d be nice to allow yourself a sweet little bit of musical dessert - without thinking things to death or worrying about a few extra calories.

Impressive work

This is a fantastic album from a serious and dedicated new artist. Mark Radcliffe's second album is a professionally produced and mastered artistic statement that coheres beautifully. It is an impressive album - and yet has enough rawness to still sound fresh and real. Mark's voice has tremendous range that was not fully developed on his debut album, but now effortlessly ranges from falsetto to baritone staying in key with ease. He is a passionate artist who has a thoughtful and deeply melodic sense of musical aesthetics. His lyrical and melodic depth are evident in the broad range of styles in this work; from the ironically cheerful "Santa Monica Daze" to the etherial "No Time to Lose", this album delivers a range of pieces that offer just the right amount of passion, depth, lightness, and beauty to leave the listener wanting more from this talented new artist. Bravo!

The Sea Before Us, Mark Radcliffe
View In iTunes
  • $9.99
  • Genres: Rock, Music, Pop
  • Released: Nov 07, 2009

Customer Ratings