Sea Of Cowards

Metascore
70

Generally favorable reviews - based on 32 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 32
  2. Negative: 0 out of 32
  1. Uncut
    60
    Sea Of Cowards is undeniably a major rock record in terms of production and personnel, but is caught between two camps: What is contains is neither major, nor indie, simply enjoyably minor. [Jun 2010, p.94]
  2. Mojo
    60
    The mood is authentically heavy but the impact is strangely light. [June 2010, p. 104]
  3. Under The Radar
    50
    It's no surprise that the album feels rushed and convoluted. [Spring 2010, p.62]
  4. There is some real chemistry here, but for the third album, it may be advisable to pay more attention to quality control in order to make the truly epic album that is doubtlessly lying somewhere within The Dead Weather.
  5. It sounds as if it was a laugh to record, less so to listen to.
  6. Unlike the Ranconteurs' sophomore slump, Sea of Cowards doesn't suffer from lack of inspiration. It's simply a matter of a lackluster songwriting effort as the product of deserved success, which in some respects is a worse misstep.
  7. Yet while White stalks bewitching frontwoman Alison Mosshart to sublime effect in "The Difference Between Us" and "Die by the Drop," the album still sounds rushed, as if the Dead Weather can't wait to storm the stage.
  8. The Dead Weather have released another quickly recorded batch of entirely unmemorable, unpleasantly limp rock music showcasing Jack White’s increasingly irrelevant take on garage, blues, post-punk, and guitar refuse.
  9. Underneath the goop, the recycled riffs wear thin and there is such lack of songwriting that, though they might get heavy, tracks also get dull quickly. But here's the rub: some of it's catchy and ridiculous enough to be enjoyable.
  10. Sea of Cowards, for all its snarkiness and caustic overtones, is ultimately a fun record, but it’s likely the band had way more fun playing it than I did listening to it.
  11. But as with “Horehound,” “Sea of Cowards” is all about the volatile vibe rather than songs. When the vibe works, it’s a decent approximation of the band’s top-shelf live show. But beneath all the “Hustle and Cuss,” the tunes just aren’t there.
User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 45 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 8
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 8
  3. Negative: 1 out of 8
  1. Dec 31, 2015
    8
    The White Stripes were Jack White in his prime and at his best. Same can be said of Alison Mosshart and The Kills. However, as side projectsThe White Stripes were Jack White in his prime and at his best. Same can be said of Alison Mosshart and The Kills. However, as side projects go, The Dead Weather knocks most others out of the water. A fine fusion of blues and rock, "Sea of Cowards" is more focused and more committed to The Dead Weather concept than debut "Horehound". It's as good as anything either The White Stripes or The Kills have released in the last decade and is an effort all involved in should be proud of. The opening suite of "Blue Blood Blues", "Hustle and Cuss" and "The Difference Between Us" sets the fire off nicely and are 3 tunes I'd recommend to any fan of blues rock. The rest of the album does a decent job of maintaining the standards. Full Review »
  2. Jun 14, 2014
    10
    The good thing about The Dead Weather is that they're loud, just really loud, both live and on record, you can just hear, yet they rarely loseThe good thing about The Dead Weather is that they're loud, just really loud, both live and on record, you can just hear, yet they rarely lose melody or venture into metal ( as the queens of the stone age, who are the only other loud 'Rock' band nowadays sometimes do) Sea of Cowards is a sonic assault recorded on the back of their first tour, the iron was still hot, if thats the fraise, This is the real deal, its dark, swampy, grungy....whatever else the press said about it, but its also beefheartian, its experimental, its retro, its brand new, it finds you a job, it is a job...(waits) and its not as somber or serious as there first outing, it sounds like less of a dust bowl driving album than Horehound and more like a Witching hour voodoo ritual, calling up and almost matching the ghost of Jeffrey Lee Pierce (of the gun club) in high pitched squeals and punk blues freakout. Full Review »
  3. Mar 31, 2014
    9
    I would rank this as one of Jack whites best albums, it is far removed from the white stripes but that is to its advantage, the band here seemI would rank this as one of Jack whites best albums, it is far removed from the white stripes but that is to its advantage, the band here seem to work as one, it is impossible to tell who is playing guitar on each track and often hard to distinguish Mosshart and White's vocals, the album has a distinctive tinny flavor and sound that won't appeal to everyone often riffing for a long time on repeated verse or a single hook, however the pace and tension that is built by this makes for an exciting album. And it very much is an album rather than a collection of singles, it all forms a cohesive world you are invited to join, my only negatives about the album probalby coem down to taste, I find the lyrics lacking some what, save for Blue Blood Blues which is lyrically compelling the album too often falls back on catchy riffs and abandons lyrical content, also there is a strange quality to the mastering that means songs never feel as full or heavy as a band like Queens of the stone age for example, the songs come of sometimes much more like 'Raw Power' by the stooges, with songs sounding sharp and thin, this could easily be intentional but again, as a personal preference I think the lack of rounded sound makes the album seem rushed and unfinished, detracting from it slightly. All that said I think the concept behind the album, the overall texture and the songs themselves are as strong as any rock and roll outfit has released and I thoroughly enjoy every song. stand out tracks to me include Blue Blood Blues, I'm Mad and Old Mary. Full Review »