The mid-90s was an interesting time for the rock landscape that was dominated by a mix of post-grunge acts, aging classic rock bands and hook-friendly corporate rock. The alternative music scene was beginning to break through to the mainstream thanks in part to the success of both Lollapalooza and H.O.R.D.E. – who exposed attendees to bands that weren’t necessarily getting radio airplay or support from MTV. Why am I once again boring you with a history lesson? Well it’s mainly to give context to the the era of when Ben Folds Five first arrived, with their smart brand of piano-pounding rock that mixed Elton John-esque pop with Glass Houses-era Billy Joel and a heaping dose of punk-rock enthusiasm. Set up like a traditional jazz trio, the three-piece act, formed in Chapel Hill back in 1993, proved that you could make rock music without the assistance of an electric guitar, and rock out just as hard, releasing three critically acclaimed albums before deciding to call it quits in October of 2000.
After over a decade apart, which saw Folds find arguably more success as a solo act then he had with BFF, the trio reunited last year to record new tracks for the career spanning retrospective The Best Imitation of Myself. Those sessions led to the band reconvening earlier this year at Folds’ Nashville studio, where over the the course of six weeks they laid down the tracks for The Sound Of The Life Of The Mind, their first album of new material in 13 years, which hits stores tomorrow. The band, who reintroduced themselves to the masses this summer with much buzzed about sets at Mountain Jam and Bonnaroo, have just released the music video for the album’s high-octane lead single Do It Anyway.
The video, which is a joint venture between Nerdist Industries and the Jim Henson Company, features Ben Folds Five joined by the loveable characters from Fraggle Rock (who will be celebrating their 30th anniversary in 2013), as well as cameos from actress Anna Kendrick and comedians Rob Corddry and Chris Hardwick. Let’s check it out…
Ben Folds Five are currently in the midst of their fall tour, which brings them to Atlanta tomorrow night for a gig at the Tabernacle. Additionally, you can also check out a behind the scenes featurette about the making of the video.