Customer Reviews

25
4.3 out of 5 stars
Faithful
Format: Audio CDChange
Price:$9.99 + Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on March 11, 2005
Format: Audio CD
Rundgren was on a roll like no other Rocker throughout the entire 70's! While he is still, in my opinion, very relevent in 21st Century music, Something/Anything, Wizard, Todd, Faithful and Hermit (his solo recordings circa 1972/1978)ALL are Five Star records!

The name of this record is a Double Entendre. Most obvious is the reference relating to side one in which Rundgren presents us with an entire side of spot on covers. And again I think there are two meanings here...1) Rundgren pays homage to the music and musicians that have infulenced him and his music and, 2) Todd once again getting to flex his musical muscle and show everyone on the planet, "He don't need no stinkin' band mates!" No producer, Recording Engineer and probably even janitor too!LOL

The second meaning of Faithful, at least for me, is a reference to the tone of the songs on side two. In my opinion "Love of the Common Man," "Cliche" and "The Verb To Love" are three of Rundgren's strongest, and must beautiful, odes to Love. Commitment, FAITHFULness being the cornerstone of Love. Almost THIRTY years later I still CAN NOT listen to "Love of the Common Man" just once. Godd, the guitar riffs, the vocals, the MESSAGE... While Todd mastered the perfect Power Pop tune on "S/A" I think THIS song in all of Todd's canon is my favorite!

While I'm going to stick with my 5 Star rating, I think this record would have been better, NOT without the covers, but WITH more originals. I just wish that Rundgren could have given us a full LP's Worth of (original) Tunes. Because as Wonderful as the covers are, the Todd penned songs are Some of the VERY BEST this master of Rock & Roll ever created!
44 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on August 3, 2001
Format: Audio CD
My view is pretty much the same as the last reviewer...what was side 2 of the original LP gets 5 stars all the way while side 1 is a head scratcher.
The originals on side 2 are some of Rundgren's best, and this was Todd's return to the eclectic pop-rock of "Something/Anything" after an extended period of progressive experimentation. Highlights include the hard rocking "Black and White", the perfect pop of "Love of the Common Man" and "Cliche", the lush soul ballad "The Verb To Love", and the humor and killer lead guitar of "Hamburger Hell".
The covers are sort of a novelty, interesting the first time around but afterwards something that you rarely return to. Perhaps this was Todd's wry response to his record company's request to "give them some hits". ;-) A very slight update to the last review - not that it matters much - is that Todd doesn't clone the original vocals and backing on "If 6 was 9" while he does on all of the others. However, the arrangement remains the same.
So while the covers - though mildly fascinating - bring the rating down, the originals are worth the price of admission alone. There's good reason why the majority of them became mainstays in Rundgren's live sets. If you're a Todd fan, you can't miss this one (can you miss any?)...but if you're just beginning to explore Rundgren's music, for his pop-rock side start with "Something/Anything" and "Hermit of Mink Hollow" before coming here.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format: Audio CD
Todd Rundgren's album, Faithful, offers a brief introduction to some of the artist's most cogent, but less familiar original work. While the cover tunes are fine performances, it's his original work on this album that earns the stars. "Cliche" and "Love of the Common Man" illustrate Todd's mastery of the pop genre, while "Black and White" takes the listener down to the heavy metal end of the spectrum. "The verb,"to Love" showcases the artist's soul roots and esoteric leanings. "Boogies" sounds like a whacked-out Broadway theme song for fast-food employees. However, the golden track on this album -- worth two stars alone in my book -- is the brief but spectacular "When I Pray." Layers of syncopated rhythms, the gospel-inspired lead vocal, Caribbean ju-ju man squeaks, and a joyous, tribal Todd-clone chorus juxtapose an anxiety-laden lyric with a result that still sounds fresh some twenty years after the artist laid each track by hand. "Faithful" offers a highly distilled essence of Todd Rundgren's enduring qualities: an incredible voice, highly capable and versatile musicianship, an intelligent message, and flawless production.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on April 15, 2005
Format: Audio CD
"Faithful" is half covers, half new songs. Unfortunately, the point of the covers seemed to be for Todd to show off his studio wizardry. He tries to perfect them note-for-note, and does a good job. I'm not bashing them, but I've never been big on covers albums to begin with.

Luckily, there's Side 2. All Todd originals, and after the bizarre trips of "A Wizard, a True Star" and "Todd", he's surprisingly back in pop mode again.

"Black and White" is a superb rocker with strong enough hooks to keep it a pop song as well. "Love of the Common Man" is probably Todd's greatest song..ever. Downbeat, sad, beautiful..yet mid-tempo and catchy. Simply euphoric.

"When I Pray" is pretty weird, actually. Todd singing in a strange accent; Afro-Cuban instrumentation. But it's so damn catchy. 'Yah yah you..', indeed.

The accoustic based "Cliche" is another Todd classic ballad; it's heartbreaking and gorgeous. "The Verb To Love" is an epic, majestic soul ballad with slight touches of psychedelia (glistening synthesizers) and jazz (the jazzy piano break in the middle). It's another Todd classic, jeez.

Finally, "Boogies (Hamburger Hell)". Any song that features the lyric "Two all beef patties, special sauce lettuce pickle cheese onion on a sesame seed bun" cannot be taken too seriously..but it's a deliciously (no pun intended) catchy rocker.

Side 2 is so good, that I still give the album 5 stars, even though the covers are skippable. Todd churns out classics like a machine on here. Not to be missed.

Also, as a sidenote, many people mistake this as one of Todd's one man band efforts in which he did everything himself. Well, he did a lot himself as usual, but he does have his Utopia bandmates (that's Kasim Sulton, Willie Wilcox, and Roger Powell) backing him here on bass, drums, and keyboards.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on July 17, 2002
Format: Audio CDVerified Purchase
Todd does not do carbon copies of the covers on this album. Granted, they are carefully accurate versions, but with Todd's own little twists along the way. For me, the result is like being at a concert and hearing the performer go into covers of old favorites that everyone likes, but with that performers own fresh treatment of the song. The keyboards on "Strawberry Fields" are fun to listen to and I love his cover of "Rain", perhaps my all-time favorite of Beatle songs. The Dylan and Hendrix covers are cool, but the very first song (Yardbirds?) is not a song I had heard before, and it hasn't yet grown on me. Of the original songs, I rate "Love of the Common Man" the best, but I still like to hear the live version of this song that Todd combines with "Eastern Intrigue" better from the King Biscuit album. Unlike the other reviewers, however, it is the covers that he does for the first half of the album that makes this worth the purchase price for me.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on May 15, 2001
Format: Audio CD
I guess the thing that's always bugged me about "Faithful" is -- why? The second side (or half) of this album has the strongest lineup of songs Todd ever made, "Something/Anything?" excepted. "Cliche" is one of his three or four best songs ever, and "Love of the Common Man" and "Black and White" aren't far off.
But what's the point of the first side? What you get are letter-perfect, note-perfect, vocal-perfect remakes of things like "Good Vibrations," "Strawberry Fields" and "Most Likely You Go Your Way". And we're not talking "covers" here; we're talking photocopies. They sound exactly as they sound on the originals, except Todd's singing them, and even he tries to emulate the original vocalist as much as possible. He kind of did the same thing with his soul medley on "A Wizard," but that was only a few songs and he mixed them up enough to make them distinctive. Why waste a side on a race against authenticity, just to see if you could do it right?
Side Two would get five stars. But I can't even really rate Side One; it's a project in cloning. I'd sure like to know what his motives were, 'cause I'm stumped.
11 commentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on July 11, 2000
Format: Audio CD
While the covers side of Todd Rundgren's album "Faithful" does offer accurate representations of others' work, I find them difficult to listen to. Don't know why. I would just rather listen to Todd play Todd, I suppose. Which is what Side Two is **all** about. They represent well and faithfully his style range...and showcase his arrangement and production talents extraordinarily well. I saw him perform most of these cuts live worked into a recent show (June 2000). Still crisp and fresh with a fruity pop center...and lyrics you can sink your brain into. What else could you want? I give it a 95 'cause I still can jump up and down to it after 20 years.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on June 12, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Side one - yeah it's good for playing to people and seeing how long it takes them to realise that it's not the original.
Side two - blow me, it's perfect. The Verb To Love is surely the greatest ballad ever, it sounds like late era prince but with the freakiest chord changes, weirdest & most beautiful harmonies and general musicianship that is so rich it sometimes makes me take off my headphones and rest a while before carrying on. It's fab that Todd returned to such great songs after his 'experimental' period, wish there were more of them.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on July 17, 1999
Format: Audio CD
I hope Todd has not stumbled onto the previous reviewes. Rundgren, as any fan should know, is a genius musician and studio engineer. Long before the heartless, profiterring recording monsters sold the evergrowing, ingnorent, and credulous masses the likes of Grammay Winning Milli Vanilli, Todd was attempting to educate audiences to the technological achievements not far on the horizon. By making recordings of some of rocks most innovative, important and unique artists and achieving near perfect replicas assisted by nothing more than studio smoke and mirrors he was trying to tell use to be cautious about what we let become of rock and roll. It saddens me so to know that in todays dollar driven buisness of rock any musical illiterate with the price of a CD determins what passes for popular music. This album is/was great and important only if you can understand its message. If music be the food of life we are dying of malnutrition. So don't be such a big girls blouse and refer to the previously authored side of this LP as covers. They were not simply covers they were a warning that aparently has gone unheard.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format: Audio CD
Even in the always surprising musical world of 70's pop Todd Rundgren always seemed to be turning heads. Looking back it probably has little to do with his genre bending style as it does with the creative way in which he handles all the melodies,harmonic variations and chord changes he uses so well within all his musical concepts. The song comes first and because Todd loved to bring in elements of the more densely chorded 70's style soul into his pop music as opposed to just working with one variation of the 12 bar blues after the other. The interesting thing about this album is that it includes one half of covers,apparently music that inspired his own. They're all 60's rock hits and all are interestingly presented very very close to the originals but done extremely well. "Good Vibrations" and "Rain" are in fact carbon copies but showcase Rundgren as an excellent mimmic as well as someone with very good taste in pop music. Of his originals "Black And White" and the oddball rock n soul groove of "Boogies (Hamburger Hell)" are the most rock guitar oriented the the harder edged of the tunes here,even though both have a certain abstract touch that Rundgren was able ready and able to blend into even his poppiest music. And for that "Love Of The Common Man" and "Clishe" are excellent examples of Todd's soul/pop singer-songwritet style. The most impressive song here is the nearly eight minute "The Verb "To Love"" which definately extends Rundgren's writing style and ability at creating expressive chord changes to the next level. It's no secret that Songs in the Key of Life came out this same year because that style of songwriting was having a very strong effect on Rundgren here. Even though I am sure most Rundgren fans think of his music more in a pop/rock context than a soul inflected one. He sure had a strong streak of albums though with wonderful artistic results and this ranks as definately one of them.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
     
 
Customers who viewed this also viewed
Initation / Faithful
Initation / Faithful by TODD RUNDGREN (Audio CD - 2011)

Global
Global by Todd Rundgren (Audio CD - 2015)

A Wizard, A True Star
A Wizard, A True Star by Todd Rundgren (Audio CD - 1990)
 
     

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.

Your Recently Viewed Items and Featured Recommendations 
 

After viewing product detail pages, look here to find an easy way to navigate back to pages you are interested in.