The title-----this was the first time I noticed layers of meaning in one of TR's album titles.
* faithful to sound of original (the covers).
* faithful/ troping toward the spiritual; full of faith
* faithful/ faith in humanity (Love of Common Man)
* faithful/ in context of relationship, the predominating theme of side 2
* faithful/ with that word's connotation of responsibility (Verb to love)
* faithfulness in an ironic sense, as in faithfulness to outmoded beliefs, attitudes, ways of thought--- to put it in another way, faithfulness to what you've always been told (B & W, Cliche) ..who makes up the rules for the world?
* faithfulness in yet another ironic sense; Love of the Common Man, Cliche and Verb to Love could be seen as a return to Todd's trademark sappiness (I don't see them that way)
and I'm sure there's more...
The first thing that struck me, listening to this album after a long time(I have only a crappy commercially recorded cassette - I'll remedy soon--meanwhile I accept your pity) is what a solid side it is.
The first droning chords leading into B & W set us up for the sound and softer tone of Love of the Common Man, Cliche, and Verb to Love the middle 3 songs., which are bookended by the electric B&W and Boogies. Also in there somewhere, probably between Common Man and Cliche, has to be When I Pray. The @#$% cassette has it at the end of side 1.
This structure, along with the themes of the songs, make side 2 of "Faithful' a musical palindrome. Working from each end to the center, we've got cultural critiques, love of persons, with one-to-one love of God and love of one person at the center.
I never registered this palindromic/mirroring structure consciously until now (except the electric/semi-acoustic aspect), but it obviously contributes a lot to the impression of strength and solidity I associate with "Faithful"(side 2).
Jules (faithful but written out for now)