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Ben Folds Five [Import]

Ben Five Folds Audio CD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (107 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 12.87 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Product Details


1. Jackson Cannery
2. Philosophy
3. Julianne
4. Where's Summer B.?
5. Alice Childress
6. Underground
7. Sports & Wine
8. Uncle Walter
9. Best Imitation Of Myself
10. Video
11. The Last Polka
12. Boxing

Product Description

Amazon.ca

Like the best guitar heroes, Ben Folds, pianist and leader of a guitarless trio called the Ben Folds Five, commands and fuels his small, tightly wound ensemble with an authoritative, nearly virtuosic style. Folds, based in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, borrows from everywhere but lends new inspiration and insight to the instrument's possibilities--he's the Jimi Hendrix of the baby grand. His frenetic key-pounding eclipses old-time styles from honky-tonk to Jerry Lee Lewis rag, and he outplinks megastars such as Elton John and Billy Joel while sifting them both through the mondo hammerings of classic pop-loving alternative keyboard bashers like Todd Rundgren and Jools Holland. To complement Folds-the-pianist's clean and bright ivory tinkerings, Folds-the-singer's clear and dynamic tenor swirls through Folds-the-songwriter's very capably crafted, sugary pop gems. "Philosophy" starts with a rolling Joel-like intro, slips into a Rundgrenish verse and chorus--complete with the perfect Beatlesque harmonies of bassist Robert Sledge and drummer Darren Jessee--and then breaks out in an overdriven piano quote from Gershwin in the climactic solo. "Underground" Sgt. Peppers us with faux theatrics and then plunges into a soul-gospel groove about the joys of the alternative rock scene. "Uncle Walter" is a character sketch Ray Davies wishes he wrote but couldn't; "Boxing" is an imagined confab between Muhammad Ali and Howard Cosell that Tom Waits wishes he wrote but wouldn't. The rest of Ben Folds Five's debut achievement just does what any other timeless summer record should: it makes you feel sunny enough inside to last all through the year. --Roni Sarig

Product Description


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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars One-of-a-kind, solid debut June 8 2004
Format:Audio CD
This being Ben Folds Five's first CD, I expect that Folds, Jesse, and Sledge wanted this to be a debut that wouldn't fade within a year like so many other first albums. Nearly nine years later, and the self-titled masterpiece is still one of the most impressive blendings of piano with pop/rock I've ever heard. Much more articulately than Something Corporate ever has, Folds tickles the ivory with such utterly blinding skill and artistry that it makes me drool every time that I pop this CD in. This album feels rather like indie rock almost (¡§Underground¡ being the most noticeable and nostalgic indie track on the CD). You may think that I¡m a avid fan who puts Ben Folds on a pedestal and extols him as the quintessential savior to modern music. The truth is that the boy from Chapel Hill, NC does a pretty good job of being a musical savior.
The CD opens up with the jaunty 'Jackson Cannery.' It¡s musically solid, and I catch myself singing the chorus line and the tag often. Not an amazing song, but it grows on you. It then moves into 'Philosophy,' one of Ben Folds most impressive piano-focused licks coming in the intro and in the finale of this song, sounding almost like something from Gershwin¡s¡¥Rhapsody in Blue¡ in the end. Overall, just brilliant song-writing, and one of his most stunning and prolific piano parts. Some other note-worthy songs would be the compelling waltz 'Boxing,' and 'Underground,' which shows off Ben Folds' jazz ability with the tag, a brilliant jazz rift that feels almost like a Scott Joplin rag.
Ben Folds is lucky enough to have some incredible back-up singers (with some surprisingly high voices), but Folds himself carries a lot of power with his ranging voice, spanning great depths of power. Don't get me wrong; they miss in one or two places, ("Julianne" just never gets off the ground) but this CD grows and grows on you, until you eventually get lost in the techinical wizardry of Ben Folds Five.
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5.0 out of 5 stars makes me laugh April 17 2004
Format:Audio CD
Besides having such energy and good tunes, it seems like BFF probably had a lot of fun making this album. I cannot compare their music to anyone else, and their lyrics make me laugh. I wish I could have seen them live when they were still together, but I've had to settle for the DVD (although I have seen solo Ben Folds & it's a fun show). Sports and Wine and Uncle Walter have humorous lyrics, and Philosophy, Jackson Cannery, Where's Summer B, and the Last Polka are also good songs. BFF is a refreshing change from the music that seems to be on MTV all the time -- lots of guitar rock and/or R&B which I'm not so fond of. I'm on the road a lot, and this is one of my favorite CDs to listen to, and the miles go by a lot quicker.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Capsule Review - Ben Folds Five Feb. 14 2004
Format:Audio CD
The best place to start for wannabe Ben Folds afficionados, the 1995 debut is stuffed with wonderful tunes and winning couplets - and not a guitar in sight. Philosophy, Where's Summer B? and Underground are obvious highlights, but other tracks win their way into your heart and mind - the melancholy Boxing or the defiant Best Imitation Of Myself, for instance. A stunning debut, and one Folds has come close to, if not fully bettering.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Ben Folds. Feb. 11 2004
Format:Audio CD
This is about as punk rock of an album as you can make without a Guitar in sight. But then again, there are touches of Ben Folds' sweet sorrowful side too, which makes it a little less punk.
Standout tracks include Underground, Philosophy, and Boxing, though all of the tracks have a potential difference to them. Underground starts with fantastic and humorous intro, then kicks into some friendly, happy keyboarding...
Boxing is a sorrowful tale of a man at the end of his career, looking back on whether or not he's proud of himself or not. It's a touching and bittersweet tale and shows a little of Ben Folds' great story telling ability.
Overall, Ben Folds is an AMAZING piano player (and completely nuts live). The songs transcend "piano music" and this album has a fun, youthful tone to it, which seems to be a rarity in "piano music" as well.
If you're a little bit alternative, then this is a must own album.
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5.0 out of 5 stars All The Hype Can't Be Wrong!!! Dec 6 2003
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
I just pulled this out of my collection after hiding it away for way too long, and would have to agree with all the other reviewers...this is a stunner! Ben Folds acerbic wit and energy come through like a freight train! This is probably my favorite out of all of them(but don't quote me on that!) A MUST BUY!
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5.0 out of 5 stars ben folds is the man Dec 2 2003
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
i love this album and this is the greatest thing ben folds has ever done in his life, music-wise. if you're out there man, PLEASE GET THE BAND BACK TOGETHER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Something for everyone (with taste) Nov. 13 2003
Format:Audio CD
I love all sorts of music-- from Daft Punk and Basement Jaxx, to Dave Matthews and Jon Mayer, to Sum 41 and Queens of the Stone Age, to Michael Jackson and Britney Spears, to Fatboy Slim and DJ Shadow, to Ella Fitzgearld and Norah Jones, to Frank Sinatra, The Beatles and beyond. But this is my favorite. Of EVERYTHING. In the whole world. Ben Folds Five was an amazing band, and to this day I internally weep at the fact that they are no longer together, because though Folds himself is a fabulous solo performer, the music is always stronger when performed with all the instruments intended to be used in the songs. But if you are only going to buy one Ben Folds or BFF cd, this should be it. It makes you smile, it makes you laugh, it makes you cry, it makes you think. But most of all, it makes you happy-- to know that in this day and age musical prodigies do still exist.
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