By Josh Bell
First of all, there are only three guys in Ben Folds Five, which can be a little confusing at first. Those three guys went their separate ways in 2000, when frontman Ben Folds embarked on a solo career. But the alt-rock trio (which stood out in the ’90s for featuring Folds on piano, but no guitarist) returned last year with their first album in 13 years, The Sound of the Life of the Mind, and is now on a reunion tour around the country, supporting that album and playing popular ’90s songs like “Brick,” “Song for the Dumped” and “One Angry Dwarf and 200 Solemn Faces.”
Although the band members got together in 2008 for a one-off show performing 1999 album The Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner, they decided to record a new album first rather than embark on a greatest-hits tour. “We decided early on to not be so nostalgic about our own material,” bassist Robert Sledge told jambands.com. “I believe what this band does well is spontaneous music.” That means spontaneity in the approach to old material, as well as the continued creation of new material (Folds has said the band already has enough for two more albums). The three guys in the Five aren’t going away anytime soon.