There have been a few changes at this long running local comedy club. First of all, no Tiernan Douieb, which is obviously a shame. They have also spaced the chairs out for a bit more safety and comfort, turning a packed 70ish capacity room into a much more relaxed 40 seat place. Much more less of a fire trap.
It’s been over a year since I’ve been here. I don’t know why it’s taken me so long as I’ve always had a good time. Up until 750, there were only 6 of us in, but between 8pm and 820 another 25 people arrived. I’m not sure why they were so late as the gig was meant to start at 8pm.
The compere was Ed Gamble who did a pretty good job getting the room on side and picking on poor Connor for his poor clapping skills. As is normal in comedy clubs he asked the front row what they did for a living and where they came from and i wasn’t spared this. It’s always fun yet slightly embarrassing explaining to comedians what I do (and if you don’t know, I’m not going to tell you) and Ed wasn’t sure if I was making it up or not.
I was chosen as the designated clapper to bring on the first act, Matthew Crosby. He’s the bearded one from Pappy’s, whose Flatshare Slamdown (download it from that link for free) I am a huge fan of. He was trying a lot of new material and had to refer to his notes a lot but was rather funny, teaching us about the awkwardness of introductions when you only know one person’s name, his hypochondria and lying.
Next up was Daniel Simenson, quite a cute young Norwegian guy. He spoke quite slowly, thinking about each line, leaving a lot of room for the lines to breathe. The audience left quite a few silences too, but mostly laughed. His squirrel impression was a bit too derivative of Izzard for me, but I did like the end of the gig when he went back over the ideas that didn’t work, and questioned why he thought they were funny in he first place.
After the break Chris Stokes came on. He’s not from London! Shocking. He’s a short skinny cross between Bernard Butler and Professor Brian Cox, and mainly spoke about his geekiness (which a lot of people do in comedy these days) but the highlight (for us, not him) was telling us about getting sexually harassed by a tramp the last time he visited London.
Finally Simon Munnery arrived to do his “Hats Off To The 101ers” show. I would definitely put him down as one of the top 3 comedians working today. He has influenced my other favourites (Lee & Herring) and is absolutely mesmerising. He played a few songs (“Sainsburys”, “Stop The War”) and decided to rip apart the lyrics to John Lennon’s “Imagine”. There were a few people here tonight who clearly didn’t know who he was and I could only imagine what they thought when the Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall-alike took to the stage (well, floor) but everyone was won over quickly apart from the one audience member who walked out fairly sharpish.
And this is just the start of my comedy week. I still have Fun Haus, Richard Herring, Stewart Lee and Dara O’Briain to go…