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4.6 out of 5 stars16
4.6 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 27 March 2002
If you are at all new to the Ben Folds Five experience, i suggest you start where they did; with the self titled debut album. There is not a dull moment on the whole CD. Every track is pure musical genius, however, clearly the band have not decided which musical path to take at this point which i think is beneficial in the debut as it displays the variety of styles which the trio are capable of projecting. On first listen, you may find it slightly off beat and difficult to "get into" but the second time you press play you will be astounded by the sheer melodic beauty of tracks such as Philosophy, Where's Summer B, and the unforgettable Sports and Wine. The lyrics are easy to relate to and hilarious references to Uncle Walter spitting while he is talking, with tobacco rolling down his chin, makes listening to this CD such an enjoyable experience, you'll be so sad when it's finished, you'll just listen to it all over again! For the sake of your smile, Buy this album! It will make you enjoy life even more!
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on 9 August 2006
Chris Evans first introduced me to Ben Folds when Underground was his record of the week back in 95! Since then i bought the album and i have been a total ben folds disciple!

This first album Rocks! From the wicked Best imatation through to the beautiful waltz of Boxing. I have seen the Ben Folds five seven times in London and Ben Folds twice!

He is God and long may he reign!
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on 8 December 1999
If you want some inventive, original, uplifting music then you NEED this album. Ben Folds Five are a three-piece of piano, bass and drums like you have never heard before and their songs range from quietly uplifting to blatantly cheerful and everything inbetween. It is music you can never grow tired of and which is unmatched by any other band I've ever heard. For any one who really appreciates what music should be then this album should definitely be in your basket.
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on 23 December 1999
A stunning debut of an albumn... With just Piano ( Ben Folds ), Bass ( Robert Sledge ) and Drums ( Darren Jesse ) , Ben Folds Five manage to pull off the most overwhelmingly listenable record of the decade. From the funky opening of 'Jackson Cannery', to the fantastic string arangement in the finale 'Boxing', this albumn contains some of the most catchy melodies and devoted lyrics in pop music without taking away from the spectacular musicianship. This albumn is a must for anyone with a passion for interesting pop music or quite simply anyone who enjoys being impressed by sheer musical talent.
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on 22 July 2013
A perfect album?

The lyrics are great multi layered and they tell stories some fun, some not so fun.
The vocal harmonies are sometimes misplaced however Ben Folds really has a fun voice, back up with Darren and Robert, the trio have a surprising vocal range and although it would be wrong say Ben Folds is one of the best singers, he certainly has his moments. There's something about his voice... which although not incredibly powerful... it's different it sound sincere, like he's actually feeling what he's singing.
I think the piano filed a complaint, it must have taken a beating, Philosophy and Jackson Cannery are just a few examples of why Ben Folds may be the greatest rock pianist of his and and a couple more generations.
The Bass really stands out as well Robert is in full fuzz mode.

Most importantly the album is fun. Yes finally a band that doesn't take itself too seriously. Ben Folds Five manage to churn hit after hit, Underground, philosophy, sports & wine, Best imitation of myself, Jackson cannery, boxing, video, the last polka they're all songs which will be played and replayed constantly on your Ipod.

Ladies and Gentlemen I present to you a REAL piano rock album.
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on 13 October 2004
I bought this cd after seeing a short piece about bf5 on VH1. This is the best cd I own, just ahead of every other bf5 cds I have! Ben Folds is a piano genius and the quality of his lyrics are superb. This band should get more recognition and should certainly have more people listening to them. Fantastic
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on 25 April 2001
Everyone has in their cd collection those cds that never get played and then there are those cds that find their way back to the hi-fi time and time again regardless of age. This is a classic example of one of those albums. 'Philosophy' and 'Underground' being the clear stand out tracks on the album. With Philosophy ending with one of the most influential solo pianist peices that i have ever heard. In summary a well rounded album just put it on and relax!!
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on 29 January 2007
This cd is one of the finest in my collection, no matter how often I listen to it it still blows me away, the best place to start on Ben Folds Five.
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on 15 August 2008
Love this record.
Just absolutely love it.
The sheer joy and energy is enough to make me listen to it again and again.
Despite it only being a trio, the music is very inventive, so that there is a lot to listen to.
The songs first seem "pop-ey" and easy, but the more you listen the more they grow on you, and it becomes clear that these songs were created by musical genius (I agree with the blurb on this site where comparisons are made with Todd Rundgren).

Buy it - enjoy it!
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on 25 May 2000
The biggest difference between these guys and you're average band is the lack of a lead guitarist,replaced with the tinkling of the ivories by Mr Ben Folds.I'm not really into most american bands but these guys are different sounding more musically akin to the likes of Randy Newman than any of their contemparies.This brilliant debut has too many high points to mention but standout tracks are the brilliant"Philosophy"with its wonderfully energetic piano solo towards the end,boy would I like to see that live,"Where's summer B"a perfectly delirious summer tune "Alice Childress" and "Boxing" which sounds like it was lifted straight from a broadway musical and closes the album perfectly.An album packed with genuine tunes,and a must for any serious muso.
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