REVIEW: Ed Gamble at The Lowry

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ED Gamble’s Mammoth tour hit Salford’s Lowry last night; leaving the half-filled room in tears of laughter and certainly not for his charms.

Whilst Gamble’s show was highly amusing, there was a clear difference between the first and second half, with the latter receiving a heartier reception.

Before being welcomed to the stage a string of heavy metal songs played, which divided the waiting audience into head bangers and those who just wished it would stop. Apparently Gamble is a fan of metal, hence the choice of music, which he paired with a classic rocker look of a sleeveless waistcoat, long shorts and trainers.

Despite this, he comes across as a fairly posh guy. So just seeing this ensemble and hearing him talk about the days in which he fronted a metal band was enough to get the audience seal clapping and crying. Even though it wasn’t packed in the Quays Theatre Gamble still had a warm reception, but that could have been because most of the audience had their seats up-graded due to the turn out.

The first half seemed to be mostly improvisation based on the front row’s careers, which was fairly funny with a chuckle here and there, but given the jobs Gamble had to work with (transport consultant) he did well to keep bouncing back with witty remarks.

This part of his show did drag on for too long and he didn’t have a warm-up comedian with him, so the audience took a while to get on board and get in the right mood to deal with insult fuelled comedy.

Towards the end of this half he moved into a more structured format; with the removal of his sleeveless jacket to reveal his marathon shirt and of course medal. Despite the reputation that Northerners have (being friendlier than Southerners) the crowd could definitely have been more supportive about Gamble’s achievement, in completing such a gruelling challenge, but instead the reveal was met with silence. Gamble brushed it off well and the way he laughed at his own bad puns was entirely endearing and not at all arrogant.

The second part of the show was much funnier, probably ed2due to the fact it was structured and kept building on previous jokes, which have obviously been rehearsed and tested. He did come back with a bit more improvisation asking people about their break, which worked out much better this time, despite most of the room being utterly bewildered by one gentleman’s response.

He switched it up between an anecdotal style and ‘lad humour’, with one of the most developed fart jokes man has ever witnessed. Everyone in the room learnt much more about Gamble than they probably were hoping too, with his self confession of enjoying pulling a certain something out of his anus and being a self proclaimed master of peek-a-boo.

If that leaves you with a lot of odd questions then you’ll just have to see him on one of his other many tour dates, as he will literally be all over the UK until next March. It’s very fortunate for Gamble that his comedy is miles better than his bassoon playing, although ending on a rendition of ‘3 Blind Mice’ was highly entertaining-even if it was for the wrong reasons.

He’s witty, immature and desperately needs to work on his cool. But, he’ll leave you in tears.

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