Archive for the ‘Happy Mondays’ Category

February fings

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They Might Be Giants – Electric Ballroom (8 February 2016)

Epic career-spanning set, performed with their usual vigour, humour and charm.

Bridget Christie/Sara Pascoe – The Amersham Arms (8 February 2016)

I’ve never seen Pascoe live. Having heard her interviewed at length, I always been a little underwhelmed by the panel show appearances. But, then, they shouldn’t be used as a measure of anything. Her live show is wicked smart and deftly charming. She goes on the catch-a-full-show list.

I have a lot of thoughts about the current attitude to ‘rape jokes’. And, sensibly, I keep most of these to myself. Thankfully Christie seems to have decided that he new material is going to take it on head first. It’s everything you want; hilarious, thought-provoking and, at turns, uncomfortable. Really looking forward to where this goes.


Ultimately, a really, really good TV movie. Bryan Cranston is superb. In this, like. Not just in general.

Mighty Mighty – 100 Club (19 February 2016)

More indie-schmindie nostalgia for me. Yet another unsightly bunch of men of an age that should-know-better shambling on stage and raking over material over 30 years old.

Every note of it made me feel 16 again. Like what a good pop tune should.

Terminal Cheesecake – The Lexington (20 February 2016)

Really enjoyed this. Yet, found myself focussing on just how fantastica powerhouse the drummer was. Which is never a good sign.


More Oscar® botherers. Also televisual. Unlike Trumbo, this was a movie aspiring to being an HBO mini-series, not vice versa.


Really wish I’d had the time to write the meditation on Ryan REynolds I wanted to write after seeing Mississippi Grind. Then I could be all smug. Seriously, ask anyone I went to the pub with in the last part of 2015.


Finally got round to watching what I had been told was The Wire of live-actioned Marvel. A bold claim. TBH, one that only Vincent D’Onofrio‘s near-Shakespearean take on a cartoon villain comes anywhere near fulfilling. Which, in itself, made the journey worthwhile.

I realise everyone’s probably finished the second season by now. I’ll get round to it. But, I’m not certain it’ll be able to keep that up without him.

Bat-Bike – Getting Back

Attempt to get to more new music. Random pick from blogs. Turns out they are local to me. This is great. Squinty psychedelics. Garage aesthetic. Gonna catch them live asap.

The Love Triangle – Clever Clever

Random Facebook recommend. Great stuff. The kind of fuzzalong powerpunk pop tunes that sound like they’re a dawdle to throw together. If they were, surely more people would be doing it?


Written by Tony Kiernan

01 March 2016 at 6:33 pm

Robin Ince/Kiri Pritchard Mclean/Holly Walsh/Iain Stirling – Amersham Arms (24 March 2014)

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Iain Stirling will, no doubt, be referred to as “the Scottish Jack Whitehall”.  He keeps telling us he is funnier than we seem to think.  He does not provide any proof of this.

With Glasgow Comedy Festival coming up, our usual host Holly Walsh, is standing down from compere duties this week and doing the work in progress stuff. Thanks to Lou Sanders she’s run some of this stuff past us previously. But, still, it’s nice to see her in proper stand-up mode. There are a number of really brilliant bits in there; what’s intrinsically dodgy about guide dogs and her British alternative to the base system particularly tickling me. Again, I shall express intention to catch a full ‘proper’ show from her ASAP.

I have seen Kiri Pritchard Mclean live before. I cannot remember where or when. This really bothers me. So much so, I keep missing bits of her act. Which is a shame, because she’s good. Chatty persona, dabbling in the slightly darker corners of only being able to get on the property ladder next door to a brothel. The diabetes joke made me laugh more than it really should. Never did quite place her.

I guess I need to stop going to cheap comedy gigs. I’ve seen Robin Ince, maybe, four times in he last year and on each occasion he’s been definitely working up his Imp of the Perverse schtick.  Tonight it seem at its most fully formed so far. As you would expect.  Ince attacks a stage, a ball of ire and energy.  Compare an contrast that with the love-me lickspittle that opened tonight and you’ll see…well, experience.  Practice in the art.  Even if no-one’s listening, you can always out-shout, out-rant them.  And, once you’ve got their attention…  That’s how he does it.  Unfortunately, the nod is given too early for anyone’s liking and the newer, calmerly delivered, stuff gets less time than intended.  Shame because its good.  Its all good.  OK, Ill add him to the “go to a proper show” list too.

Written by Tony Kiernan

25 March 2014 at 12:53 am

Josie Long/Lou Sanders/Michael Fabbri – Amersham Arms (10 February 2014)

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So, down the road from me, at the Amersham Arms is a regular comedy night called Happy Mondays. It’s one of them comedians try out new material type deals. And, manages to get some fairly decent folk on it. Which in turn brings in the crowd for the slightly lesser known. I’ve been down a few times since moving here and have learnt that you really want to do the whole thing, not just the name headliner. A lot of which is to do with the compère Holly Walsh. One of the few ‘lady comedians’ you may have seen on the testosteroned bearpit of Mock The Week. Obviously well used to the hosting malarkey, the thing that I note about here is just how absolutely filthy she is. She most definitely works blue. But, also, really well. Bloody funny. But, in a good way. There’s none of the omg-did-she-just-say-that nonsense. Instead, just well crafted brilliantly observant comedy. Really looking forward to catching her Edinburgh preview. (Although I suppose I could go to an actual gig sometime too. Yes, THAT good.)

Michael Fabbri delivers a pretty good set of solid observational content. Tempered by some personal embarrassments, based round a genital operation he once had. He does wander into some stuff about porn that makes me a little uneasy. Not really down to the content, but more that the whole joke seems to be “who would like something like that?!?!?”. Yes. Who indeed…

I don’t know when I first became aware of Lou Sanders, but she’s always, to my mind, been really funny. A few years back, I caught here show mid-Edinburgh and it was an absolute disaster. She spent the entire site visibly getting unnerved at the reaction she was getting. Which – if not storming – was fine. It’s afternoon, through the week, small crowd, AND they’re enjoying you. Yet, she even got to the point of picking people out of the crowd and commenting on how much they weren’t enjoying the show. It was quite painful to watch, especially as the entire crowd were with her, willing her on (maybe that’s tougher than baying at you in comedy).

Well, everyone has a bad day at work. And, it’s difficult to judge a live performance. So, I’d been eager to catch her again. This time she took to the stage, was enthusiastically received, did about 5 (also very well received) minutes, seemed to crumple, said thanks, left the stage. Nah, never again. Although it did give us more of Walsh as she desperately had to make up the time.

No such fear with Josie Long, who it’s more likely trouble getting to shut up. Many a night I’ve ended up on several night buses getting home from her Lost Treasures of the Black Heart night. You often end up with the staff sweeping up round you. This, of course, is half of appeal of JoLo; an abundant enthusiasm for the small and personal moments of joy that make life interesting/worth living. The other half is a righteous passion for justice, a hatred for the inequalities of our planet. So, topics will swing from how much fun it is to wander round your flat kidding on your a talking avocado to just how much Cameron and his cunt-bunch crew of chums want you to stop doing that. Only funny.

Of course, not all new material is going to work. Long’s latest centres heavily on how she’s given up her penchant for fat Scots blokes with ginger beards. No-one like that at all. Lead balloon situation. She can bin all of that.

Written by Tony Kiernan

11 February 2014 at 10:28 am