There is moc - Music on console. It's simpler than mpd, but ships with embedded ncurses frontend. You can use ncurses TUI with mocp or talk to the server directly.
Of course it can't do all the nifty stuff mpd can do, like network streaming, different outputs simultaneosly, etc. But as a simple console player on local machine it's pretty usefull. It works without initial configuration, in contrast to mpd. The server starts automatically when mocp is called w/o parameters, or can be started manually.
start the server
tell the server to append (-a) a music folder to the playlist
and to switch shuffle on (-o shuffle)
and to start playing (-p)
mocp -o shuffle -p -a ~/mymusicfolder
I've 9.2 GB flac files and it only need 6 sec to load it from sata 1 hdd.
from my sata 2 ssd it's instant.
My output is alsa. (Didn't had to configure)