Ben Folds Five More

Cover art from previous album.

Chapel Hill's favorite piano-bashing indie rock not-yet superstar, Ben Folds,

and his trio, the Ben Folds Five (insert requisite math joke here) have a new

album, Whatever and Ever Amen (March 18) and a new label (Sony's 550) to

ring in the new year.

The grand piano-schlepping trio, who, if you ask us,

stole the show on the Lollapalooza second stage last summer, recorded the

12-song effort in Folds' home studio in Sept. and Oct. of 1996 with Caleb

Southern, who also produced their first, self-titled album.

In typical

off-beat Folds fashion, the only "special guests" on this go-'round are those

wacky Yiddishers, the Klezmatics, who pop up on "Steven's Last Night In Town."

The first single from the album will be the almost-too-hip sounding "Battle of

Who Could Care Less."

The band hits the road as the opening act for the

Counting Crows for nine shows beginning Mar. 31 in Vancouver at the Orpheum

Theater, after which they will headline a club tour, whose dates we'll give you

when we get them. OK?