Thousand Foot Krutch holds the distinction of being one of those bands that didn't need a big label to give them a name. While they were still with small, independent label DJD Recordings, they were selling more than a few copies of their 2000 debut Set It Off. I remember hearing "Puppet" on the radio, and the DJ informing listeners that it was one of the harder CDs to find in the state. He was right. And when I finally did stumble across it, I bought it immediately.
What you got was a very raw, very edgy rapcore disc filled with hits like "Unbelievable," "Supafly," and the aforementioned, popular "Puppet." Some said it wasn't a very good disc, but numbers don't lie. People were buying this little rap/rock band from Toronto… by the tens of thousands.
But a few years later, they signed onto Tooth & Nail and released Phenomenon, the album that a lot of people know this band by. For those faithful from the start, and those that want a little taste of TFK history, Tooth & Nail has re-released Set It Off, now re-mastered, and with a brand new song, as well as five independent tracks dating back to 1998.
Those unfamiliar with Set It Off are in for a shock. Phenomenon was one of the biggest departures from a previous project in Christian music since the Newsboys decided to disco. Gone is the rawness of yesteryear, TFK now plays with a much cleaner sound. The rap is gone, replaced mostly with melodies. But TFK has always known how to rock.
First, the re-mastered tracks sound great. You almost get the impression that you're listening to a remix as "Puppet" begins. Truth be told, DJD Recordings did the best production job they could on Set It Off four years ago, but hearing the tracks with clean production is a treat.
TFK loyalists will also enjoy the final five tracks offered here. The independent tracks dating back six years ago are great and would have most likely fit on the original Set It Off quite well.
The addition of the brand new "Everyone Like Me" doesn't hurt the project at all. There is a lot offered here, as well as a lot to like. Even for people who have owned Set It Off for years, this is a great release. For those that only own Phenomenon, it serves as an almost essential lesson in 'TFK 101'.- Review date: 10/30/04, written by Josh Taylor
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