Sunday, April 15, 2018

Look Back In Anger : The Cure's "Faith"

 Once again I take a look at a classic album and see how well it not only stands up over time, but resonates with me. Since today is the 37th Anniversary of the Cure's 1981 album "Faith" , Their 3rd album , "Faith" finds them hurling further into the dark place they began exploring on "Seventeen Seconds"/"The Holy Hour" is heavy in it's gloomy plod. I normally doing like their more up beat songs. "Primary" was still in touch with their punk side, and aggressively shoves it mood in your face. The taunt tension it moves with has gone onto to influence tons of post-punk bands. There is a colder stiffness to the bass groove of "Other Voices", yet it is a lighter mood than the first two songs.

Once we get to "All Cats are Gray" the sonic rain clouds begin to settle over the albums more narcotic drone. Synths begin to play a larger role as the atmosphere begins to thicken. Robert Smith's begin to show another side . His vocal is less of a staccato punk and more of a smoother vulnerable croon."Funeral Party" finds his vocals coated in a more despondent longing as the synths form a more dream like wall behind him. With lyrics like "two pales figures ache in silence" I think you can't get more goth than that, though Smith insisted the band was never goth. They just like to dance at funeral parties. "Doubt" finds them picking it up into more of a punk pace and Robert Smith's vocals revert back to what he was doing on the first two albums. Lyrically it's more aggressive, it seems ridiculous for Robert Smith to sing about beating someone up, but that is what's happening.

"the Drowning Man" might be the album's most powerful song with it's ethereal drone. The few people who I have spoken with who aren't into the Cure site the reason as being Robert Smith is too whiny for them. This is one of the few songs where his emoting might have a whine to it. I also doubt some one giving them a casual listen is going to hear since it's a deeper cut on an earlier album and not one that garnered much in the way of radio play. The title track closes the album. It follows a simple beat with the layers of single note guitar creating another drone. The lyrics might be the album's most depressing. There are some more abstract and some what religious metaphors in the them.  I'll round this one up to a 10 not their best album, but we are talking about at band who has made some of best albums of all time, so the bar is pretty high. It is still an important piece of their evolution and a great getting high on a rainy day album.

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