LIVE: Bill Bailey @ O2 Apollo, Manchester (18/05/2013)

Date: May 18th, 2013
Venue: O2 Apollo, Manchester
Support: None


Surely by now you must have seen Bill Bailey on something. He’s been on everything: Have I Got News For You, QI, Never Mind The Buzzcocks and pretty much every other panel show at least once in the last decade. If you aren’t familiar with him, you might well be a cretin who lives under a bridge. Anyway, Bill has pioneered the form of musical comedy with his blend of stand up and tunes that never get old. Having been doing this for nearly 20 years now, he’s a household name and quite rightly so as he’s one of the most talented comedy acts around today.

Tonight, Bill is on true form with the first half of the act focused mainly on stand up rather than his musical side. Now, I’m not going to sit here and tell you what he talked about, because that defeats the point of reviewing a comedy show. However, I will say that he and I both share the opinion that Downtown Abbey is nothing more than a glorified coffee morning in olden times. His cutting remarks about the state of the UK today really hit the mark and, since he delivers them through colourful and whimsical language, they don’t come across as venomous as they would if say Frankie Boyle or Jack Dee said them.

The second half of the act focuses mainly on his musical abilities, of which he has copious amounts. Bill has a unique way of telling observation humour through songs, like for example how different the Match Of The Day theme sounds in different keys and tempos. Plus, with a few visuals aids on the big screen, it’s truly a performance to be seen (as all of his shows are).

What’s wonderful about his shows is that every one seems to be vastly different. There’s instruments on stage, like his acoustic guitar, that went untouched as if he had back up material on hand, depending on the mood of the crowd. Not only is this the sign of a fantastic comedian, but also that of a truly talented musician and, like all great comedians, he’s able to fend off a few hecklers and even work what they said into his routine effortlessly.

Bill‘s show was, of course, nothing short of hilarious. His weird and wonderful antics had me in stitches throughout the show. No doubt he will be on tour again soon and I do urge you to go see him, for it will be a gig to remember. Sure, the ticket price may be a tad steep, but I can assure you that you’ll be talking about it for weeks later. Worth every bloody penny.

Written by Andy Roberts