Ben Folds – All You Can Eat

The funky, accomplished piano solo in the middle is respite from the razor-sharped lyrics about American nationalism and patriotism, even zealotry in believing, “We’re No. 1.” It touches on consumer capitalism and materialism, contrasted with poor countries and their peoples that not only have none of the Wal-Mart goodies, but are viewed by Americans as primitives. Even hippies are thrown under the bus for not being genuine!

It seems to be a mean spirited song carrying punk rock vitriol despite the tender voice of Ben Folds and the basic piano, bass and drums instrumentation. It deals in stereotypes of Americans, of course, but also, given American decline with rising debt, high unemployment and the mortgage crisis, may be less relevant today than when it was released in 2003?

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