Ben Folds Five
At a recent show at The Pearl, Ben Folds Five's vocal harmonies continued to be top rate, as was the music itself. In case we weren't aware of just how talented a musician Ben Folds is, The Pearl camera crew did an excellent job offering many close ups of Folds' fingers in action on the keyboard.
It was obvious that Ben Folds and his band mates Robert Sledge on bass and Darren Jessee on drums appreciated the crowd's enthusiasm by their interactions throughout the concert. The fun-loving, laid back trio offered many moments of improvisation onstage, which the crowd also enjoyed.
Most impressive for me was the fact that, especially during the quieter songs, everyone was listening attentively; the proverbial pin could have dropped and it would have been heard. No texting or any cell phone use was occurring. These were hard core fans listening to an extremely talented trio of musicians. It was refreshing to experience that once again.
The concert was a perfect balance of quieter moments interspersed with loud, crisp energy. Personal highlights for me were excellent renditions of "Song for the Dumped," "Battle Of Who Could Care Less," and of course "Brick" (there was near 100 percent audience participation as we all sang along to that song).
Opening act Nataly Dawn was a crowd-pleaser as well. Her awkward but fun energy entertained the smattering of people who showed up on time. I highly recommend those people attending the future concert dates to experience Dawn as well. Overall, it was a most enjoyable evening of music.
I must admit that I am a latecomer to the Ben Folds Five party. I always had a great deal of respect for him, but had no idea just how much fun their concerts truly are.
Ben Folds Five played on Jan. 25 at The Pearl at the Palms, 4321 W. Flamingo Rd in Las Vegas. For info about upcoming shows at The Palms, call 702-944-3200 or visit www.palms.com/las-vegas-pearl-theater/. For more info about Ben Folds Five tour dates, visit www.benfolds.com.