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Lonely Avenue (Deluxe Version)

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Album Review

The formula for Lonely Avenue was a simple one: author Nick Hornby (High Fidelity, About a Boy) writes the lyrics and Ben Folds composes and performs the music. It’s a novel idea (seriously, the Deluxe Edition comes housed in a hardbound 152-page book that features four of Hornby’s short stories and photographs by Guggenheim Fellow Joel Meyerowitz) that works more often than it doesn’t. For the most part, the majority of the songs on Lonely Avenue could have appeared on anything Folds has put out since going solo in 2001. In fact, Hornby’s prose and penchant for cuss words and misunderstood protagonists is nearly indistinguishable from Folds’, who has made a career out of balancing the two since busting out of Chapel Hill in 1995. Both artists are gifted social commentators with a love for snarky, collegiate cynicism that hides a huge sentimental streak. Not surprisingly, it’s the latter predilection that provides Lonely Avenue with its most memorable moments. Folds’ late-career turn as a top-notch balladeer has unearthed some real gems, and the lush, lovingly orchestrated “Picture Window” and “Belinda,” the latter of which follows a former one-hit wonder who has to deliver his signature hit night after night, despite the fact that he ditched “Belinda” for somebody younger with “big breasts, a nice smile and no kids,” are no exception. Other highlights include the loose and likable “Doc Pomus,” the missed-connections rocker “From Above,” and the erratic, Oingo Boingo-meets-AC/DC oddity “Saskia Hamilton,” but misfires like the overblown “Levi Johnston’s Blues” and the weirdly defensive, literary white-boy funk opener “A Working Day” are as uncomfortable and awkward to listen to as they are to read through.

Customer Reviews

Real Music!!

Now this is real music!! :) I really like this album, Ben folds is AMAZING, and Nick Hornby makes it even better! :) The music where actual instruments are played, and not all of this fake, hip-hop stuff.
Good Work Guys!!!!

Totally Wicked!

Another fine recording by the great Ben Folds. Ben just continues to write edgy, catchy tunes with a very wicked sense of humour that make me smile everytime I hear them. Love the opening track, Love this album... Awesome!!!

Folds + Hornsby = Excellence

In 2009 I was lucky enough to catch one of Ben Folds concerts in Melbourne. He played "Levi Johnstons Blues" as a sneak peak into his new album and had the crowd in hysterics. Since then, I have been waiting and waiting for this album to be released. I was not disappointed, with almost all tracks being enjoyable.
For fans of Ben Folds - Do not miss.
For fans of Nick Hornsby - Do not miss.


Born: 12 September 1966 in Winston-Salem, NC

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

American singer, songwriter, and producer Ben Folds emerged in the mid-'90s as the leader of the power pop trio Ben Folds Five, before striking out on a successful solo career. Following a late-'80s stint playing bass for the band Majosha, the North Carolina native spent several years in Nashville working largely as a session drummer. Folds dabbled in acting after relocating to New York, while performing solo gigs around the city and further developing his piano and songwriting skills. Moving back...
Full Bio

Top Albums and Songs by Ben Folds

Lonely Avenue (Deluxe Version), Ben Folds
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