Huge Davies @ Pleasance Courtyard
Huge Davies, with a keyboard slung around him like a peanut vendor at a baseball game, gives a dark debut hour which balances twisted punchlines with musical levity.
The conceit? The Carpark is a musical written by Huge Davies which was supposed to be set in an actual car park. Having been given a bunker as his venue instead he’s had to come up with something else. Giving a taste of the proposed ‘musical’ sets the tone early, with lyrics that take sharp, dark turns and reversals that crack up the audience. Resentfully scrapping the musical, Davies promises his back story but gets lost in musical asides and strange observations instead which builds up nicely to a strong final act, with well written callbacks to give the audience a satisfying send off.
Davies’ monotone and deadpan expression contrasts well with the often lighthearted music that he chooses to play and manages to elicit great responses from the audience from the simplest of facial gestures or a few well chosen words. His cleverly crafted set-ups result in hilarity from the smallest of musical notes and each section enables Davies to drag the audience deeper into his surreal and subverted world; for example, him starting by lampooning the classic circus theme Entrance of the Gladiators and somehow finishing up with him playing Gladiator-esque music while picturing a man dying in casualty.
The odd, droll style of Davies has the audience laughing more than any of his dark punchlines, with his bizarre lunatic charm making the show stand out. See it as long as you don’t mind childhood memories of Wallace and Gromit being tainted.
Huge Davies: The Carpark, Pleasance Courtyard (Bunker Three), until 25 Aug (not 14), 8.15pm, £7.50-£10