"The Holy Hour" is quite possibly the best song ever written about going to church. Simon Gallup's effectively atmospheric bass line is backed up by quiet synthesizers and a gong before being fleshed out by and incredibly simple guitar part and Robert Smith's wavering vocals. "Primary" is the album's only single, so it is the album's most well-known and most accessible song (which still is not saying much). There actually appear to be no guitars in this track, as both Smith and Gallup play bass. It segues into "Other Voices", a moodier track with another memorable bass line. "All Cats Are Grey" features a descending drum pattern from Lol Tolhurst and buries the vocals as far as possible into the mix. However, the few lyrics that the song contains end up being some of the absolute darkest in the band's entire canon. "The Funeral Party" is the album's least sparse song, being fleshed out by a melancholic keyboard part and a droning, repetitive vocal melody. It segues into "Doubt", the album's most violent song musically and lyrically, featuring a rather sinister bass line and mostly shouted vocals. "The Drowning Man" utilizes stereo technology to excellent effect, as Smith's echoing vocals ebb and flow in and out of the left and right channels. The use of clapping as percussion and a haunting piano line make this song maybe the most atmospheric on an album that is built entirely upon atmosphere. The album ends with what is in my opinion as of writing this the greatest song ever written, the title track. Yet another simple-yet-excellent bass line is backed up by a simple drum beat while a guitar solo plays off in the distance. This goes on for about two minutes before Smith begins singing on top of everything. Vague yet extremely poetic, the incredible thing about his lyrics is that they can mean basically whatever that the listener wants them to. (In fact, Smith often extends the song in concert to include improvised lyrics, as well.) After the most heart-wrenching bridge ever, the song returns with a simplified melody over which Smith sings "(with) nothing left but faith" for another two minutes or so until the song finally fizzles out. In short, you need to hear this song.
This edition of 'Faith' contains a bonus disc whose contents will mostly be of value to hardcore fans. The soundtrack to the short film 'Carnage Visors' which was shown in place of an opening act on the subsequent tour is included on the first disc, as it was the B-side on the original cassette. The second disc is made up of rare demos and live tracks except for "Charlotte Sometimes", a single released in between this album and 'Pornography' based on the novel of the same name. It combines 'Faith''s claustrophobic approach with the pop sensibility of the band's earliest material, making it a classic Cure song necessary for both casual and devoted fans.
I would probably not recommend 'Faith' as an introduction to the Cure. For fans of the band, though, 'Faith' is a must-have album. It is my favorite Cure album due to its amazing atmospherics and its containing my favorite song of all time, "Faith". Necessary listening for Cure fans and those who like the idea of gothic rock but don't necessarily appreciate the genre.