COM­EDY UN­DER ThE STARS CANON’s GAIT (VENUE 78) HHHHH

The Scotsman - - Fringereviews Hotshow -

LAsT year, I gave Peter Buck­ley Hill five stars. Un­der which he laboured, he tells us. Risk­ing what he calls “the power of the Scots­man’s poo poo” he ex­plains to his rapt au­di­ence the prob­lems that visit a comic like him when they get five stars. I apol­o­gise, but, even at the risk of ru­in­ing his ca­reer, I can­not give him fewer than four this year.

But please, dear reader, don’t ex­pect to see the show I saw. That is not how PBH works. He does have a set list. sev­eral set lists in fact. We only needed the one. An hour with PBH takes you away to a much nicer place. We all join in a ver­sion of The

Wheels On The Bus that refers to the Large Hadron Col­lider, we make the sounds of a sleazy French bar at three in the morn­ing and, at PBH’s request, we sim­ply imag­ine seam­less tran­si­tions from one sec­tion of the show to an­other while he wres­tles with his gui­tar.

He pon­ders the iden­tity of the mak­ers of “un­writ­ten rules”, sings the com­plete his­tory of the uni­verse to a tune made fa­mous by Frank si­na­tra, ex­plores some of his favourite para­doxes and sizes us up, be­fore de­cid­ing to cut the Magritte gags.

One-lin­ers and ran­dom thoughts pep­per the set, along with ref­er­ences to Maslow’s hi­er­ar­chy of needs and schrödinger’s Cat. PBH is look­ing for love this year. Mainly in the Guardian. It is not go­ing well. “I’m aware that I have di­gressed con­sid­er­ably,” he says, wav­ing his set list at us. We don’t care. No one di­gresses as de­light­fully as PBH. But don’t think the ge­nial gi­ant can­not be ut­terly ap­palling. His clos­ing “his­tor­i­cal” love song was ac­com­pa­nied by the sound of sphinc­ters snap­ping shut all over the base­ment of the Canon’s Gait.

KATE COp­STICK

Un­til 29 Au­gust. To­day 6:05pm.

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