It was always going to be interesting to see what Ben Folds would do when it came to playing live without former band members Darren Jesse and Robert Sledge. Bravely, he decided to go on a solo tour, stripped of everything except his piano - and this fantastic album is the result. It's the way Ben Folds always should have been heard - acoustic, in the raw and bursting with energy - in an album that is by turns both joyfully anarchic, and wistfully beautiful.
It's packed with classics from all four of the BFF albums, and, of course, from Ben's solo work 'Rockin' The Suburbs' - and there's even a brilliant rendition of Elton John's 'Tiny Dancer' thrown in for good measure. Highlights of the 17 tracks include a fantastically energetic performance of 'Philosophy', including a solo on mike-and-piano-strings; a brave attempt to perform 'Narcolepsy' with only a piano (it works!); and the (surprisingly tuneful) audience backing vocals on 'Army' and 'Not the Same'. Also, for anyone curious to know what Mrs Frally Folds and little Louis look like, the CD booklet is packed full of photos.
In conclusion, this album showcases just how far the piano-playing talents of Ben Folds stretch, and provides undisputed proof of how, even when it's just him and a piano, Ben Folds is still rockin' the suburbs with the best of them.