Saturday, 26 January 2013

You're In Bandit Country

Published in The Irish World 26/01/13
Before 2010 Limerick city was known mostly for The Cranberries, Terry Wogan, Angela’s Ashes, and unfortunately some gang related violence.


When The Rubberbandits appeared on RTE’s Republic of Telly they soon put the city on the map for a whole new reason.


Describing themselves sarcastically as “hardcore gangster rappers”, the mischievous duo first began dabbling in the artistry of funny bone tickling when they made a CD of their prank phone calls for friends in Secondary school. Word soon spread, along with the CD and their prank calls, and later music, soon became available to the world on Youtube and their website.


Blindboy Boatclub and Mr.Chrome like to keep their identities hidden behind shopping bags, which only adds to their originality as comics and in their words- their appeal to women- as we can’t but be drawn to anything that might resemble shopping.


Although the boys often rap, joke and sing about drugs, sex and Limerick city style rock and roll, it is obvious that their intent is satirical and that there is real artistic intelligence behind what they are saying or singing.


Their gig in London’s Soho Theatre last week delivered what any loyal fan would have expected- Jack the lad playfulness, tongue and cheek gags and some very catchy and often hilarious tunes.


Arriving on stage in “Sawhaw”, as they called it, they made the audience aware that we were in for a rollercoaster of a night as their show would contain not one but three jokes- proving that these guys can even laugh at themselves.


Accompanied by Willie O’DJ- a masked character based on another of their fans back home (Minister Willie O’Dea), the cheeky chappies kept the atmosphere upbeat with their string of hilarious songs such as Horse Outside, I Wanna to Fight your Father, Black Man, Spoiling Ivan and their latest release Danny Dyer.


For each song the video, some of which directed by Fr. Ted’s Declan Lowney, played on a screen in the background accompanied by occasional lyrics which were presumably for those not acquainted with the strongest of Limerick accents.


The Rubberbandits proved once again that they don’t attempt to hold back as at one point, Mr. Chrome, naked from the waist up, encouraged the audience to join in in a verse of Devalera double dropping yokes- a reference to the recreational drug use of Ireland’s historical figure.


This followed an appearance from Willie O’DJ dressed in a black balaclava draped in the tri- colours. Something which could cause huge offence to a certain type of audience in London, but as it was delivered to us Rubberbandits-style it was obvious too all that such serious issues can be laughed at, even if uncomfortably.


This is certainly not a comedy show of which to bring your granny, but it is something very different and riskier than your average one man and a mic gig.


The Rubberbandits play Soho’s Theatre until February 2nd so if you feel like being slightly offended, bemused and yet hugely entertained this is one comedy gig which certainly deserves your attendance.


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