Thursday / Saturday Show (Edinburgh)

The Stand Comedy Club,

Thursday 27th – ­Saturday 29th

There’s an air of anticipation and the welcoming smell of folks enjoying the culinary delights, as we arrive to a packed crowd. The host for the evening, Bruce Devlin, bounds on with the air of a tornado. Ripping into the audience with a razor sharp, caustic barrage, he picks out his prey and devours them, all the time dragging the crowd with him on his camp dissection of those unfortunate enough to have braved the front row. Scathing humour, close the bone and outrageously funny I can feel the second row around me collectively sinking back in terror There is no subject matter that he can’t find an instant comeback to as he works his way through the lives of those around them, prying them open to divulge their inner banalities, then leaving them thanking him for the pleasure. The guy is smart. Funny. And very, very quick.

Opening the show is Elaine Malcolmson. She saunters on with a slow languid gait and sets off on a monologue of anecdotes and one liners delivered with a dry, dead pan droll. Her humour is low key but high impact, as she muses on the joys of Ebola to the inner workings of farm foods, her confident, solid delivery is backed up by her deadly punchlines. Occasionally these can be pre-empted before the end but her unfazed, understated attitude carries her through, as she hits the nai lon the head with her offbeat observations.

After a quick break Garry Meikle arrives, a juggernaut of energy with a fast, upbeat style which oozes with authentic charm. There’s an honesty in his delivery, and an endearing vulnerability, as he delivers lines that we’ve all said or done and collectively cringe at the memory. His act feels like a personal snapshot into his own world, from school days and square sausage to dildos and his hatred of kids, he intimately divulges his word with fast banter and a natural, unforced comedy. Charismatic laddish humour with an warm hearted punch.

A change of pace again as Lloyd Langford bumbles onto stage, an air of the country boy straight out of the Welsh valleys, he meanders in a slow patchwork of topics that bring a unique point of view to what would seem to be unexpected subject matter. I’ll never think of Edinburgh zoo the same again! He takes us through the self discovery of our own nature, confronted with endless all you can eat buffets, to the surreal landscapes of Dubai. His comedy is dry and yet philosophical and he had the audience literately spellbound. It felt a real privilege to see a comedian of this calibre up close in such a small venue. You can almost hear his inner mind working as he finds obscurity in the banal and weaves it into a surreal soup.

To end, the gear changes again, and Garry Little lurches up. A foreboding character, he’s a big guy with a strong presence. He effortlessly switches from Glasgow psycho to lovable gentle giant in the blink of an eye as he weaves, what are quite tender stories, into his hard man guise. His skit on the etiquettes of dog walking is genius, one of the funniest tales I’ve ever heard and has left a lasting image of him, with his wee dogs hanging on the ends of their leads, burned on my retina. He is a worthy headliner, and constant, raucous laughter abounded right through his set.

A brilliant night. Usually in a cabaret night of this ilk there is some weaker comedians carried by the stronger acts but this line up was diverse, unique and constantly entertaining. Strongly recommend for a night out.

Reviewer : Glenda Rome

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