Ahir Shah – Machines (Ahir Shah / Free Festival)
By Nina Keen | Published on Tuesday 16 August 2016
Though clearly smart, Ahir Shah hasn’t yet mastered the skill of self-editing. His premises, largely observations on sometimes-political themes, are often good, but his overly-wordy execution means his punchlines simply take ages to get to, ending up not feeling worth their build-up. A throwaway line gets the biggest laugh of the first ten minutes, simply because it’s so quick and unexpected. Long build-ups are obviously fine, but they need more mini-jokes (technical term) woven in and/or a truly kickass punchline. He also calls girls “precious pearls” to “lay claim to”, and tries to excuse a xenophobic joke by saying he’s joking. He treats us like idiots for not being immediately on board, but not without benefiting from its harmful value first.
Laughing Horse at Cabaret Voltaire, until 28 Aug.
tw rating 2/5 | [Nina Keen]