Noise Next Door
From Noel Fielding's Luxury Comedy
More Noel Fielding videos
|Mighty Boosh perform EELS|
He has appeared at Montreal's Just For Laughs festival in 1998, and made stand-up appearances on Channel 4 and Five before finding success with The Boosh.
The double-act made their debut at the 1998 Edinburgh and Sydney festivals, earning them the Perrier best newcomer award, and returned to Edinburgh in 1999, when they were nominated for the main award, 2000 and 2001. The 2000 show, Autoboosh, won the equivalent Barry award at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival.
The Boosh was picked up by Radio4 in 2001 for a series which won the first and only Douglas Adams Award for Innovative Comedy Writing. The show transferred to BBC Three for two series in 2004 and 2005, giving them a cult success that enabled them to embark on a major nationwide tour in 2006.
For his solo work, he won the Time Out Award for Outstanding Achievement in Comedy, while his first live solo show Voodoo Hedgehog was nominated for the Perrier Award at the Edinburgh Festival in 2002.
His TV performances as an actor include The IT Crowd, Nathan Barley and Garth Marenghi's Darkplace – all for Channel 4.
|Stand Up: 2003:
Time Out comedy award winner for outstanding achievement.
|Stand Up: 2002:
Solo Edinburgh show Voodoo Hedgehog nominated for a Perrier
|Stand Up: 2002:
Solo Edinburgh show Voodoo Hedgehog nominated for a Perrier
|Stand Up: 2000:
Arctic Boosh won the Barry Award at the Melbourne comedy festival
|Stand Up: 1999:
Perrier nominee with Julian Barratt as Arctic Boosh
|Stand Up: 1998:
Perrier Best Newcomer winner with Julian Barratt as the double act The Mighty Boosh
Give It Up For Comic Relief
Like so many things involving Russell Brand, Give It Up For Comic Relief was morally ambiguous.
The evening was raising funds for drug and alcohol addiction centres, yet seemed to be a veritable advert for consumption - from Noel Fielding’s tongue-in-cheek ‘Don’t Do Drugs’ reggae number, to Brand saying: ‘Many people watching this at home will be out of their minds on drugs, and that’s fine...’ Even unlikely narcotic advocate Simon Amstell, who needs little chemical help being paranoid or self-analytical,urged: ‘If you’ve never had magic mushrooms, you really must.’
How much of the pro-drugs message made it to BBC Three screens, I don’t know. But abstinence was not a popular option in Wembley Arena itself, which is odd considering the tie-in with Comic Relief. The skips full of drugs consumed by the likes of Noel Gallagher, Kasabian and Brand himself over the years are hardly likely to be Fair Trade, doing damage in the sort of Third World countries that the rest of the Comic Relief organisation works so hard to put right.
But such considerations were not for tonight. Brand wants a change in attitude to drug addiction so it’s akin to the approach to alcohol, that it’s fine to indulge as long as it’s not a dependency. That was one message of the night, the other was that viewers should text ‘give’ to 70005 and donate a fiver to treatment centres, as they watched the entertainment unfold.
And there was certainly a hell of a lot of entertainment for your £5... or £50 if you brought a ticket to the gig, which ran for three-and-a-half interval-free hours. OK, it’s not Mark Watson’s 25-hour effort of last week... but a long time to be passively viewing music and comedy. Wembley’s plastic seats weren’t built for that.
A ridiculously long running time is a hallmark of any big benefit, of course, as too is an eclectic booking policy, to maximise the appeal. There can’t be much Venn diagram overlap between fans of Kasabian and fans of Rizzle Kicks, but here they are sharing a bill. The former were the musical highlight, alongside Gallagher’s High Flying Birds , delivering a welcome reminder of just how impressive they can be with an awesomely epic version of Fire... which proved an entirely inappropriate introduction to Amstell’s low-key introspection.
Other musical acts on the bill were Emeli Sande, Paloma Faith, Jake Bugg, Jessie J and Nicole Scherzinger. The former Pussycat Doll rather gave away one reason for her involvement in the show by announcing the track Domino as: ‘This song is a positive, inspirational song. It’s also my next single.’
Besides the clumsy plug, surely you can’t tell people your own song is inspirational. I’ll decide what inspires me, and generic, club-friendly, R&B/pop sung by a girl in her pants, isn’t it.
As host, Brand warned against such ungenerous thoughts, pointing out that all the acts were performing for free. Throughout the night, he was playful about both the cause, and his own bad-boy reputation, from flirting with the girls to borrowing a female audience member’s mobile to demonstrate how to text a donation and suggesting: ‘This is the BBC and I’m playing with a phone. It’s already risky territory.’ Then turned to the woman and asked: ‘What’s your grandfather’s phone number?’
Later in the show Brand took a messianic walk among his followers in the audience, finding the most funny in banter with a young lad called Alfie, which he knew would never make the TV. ‘They’re not going to show a BBC presenter getting anywhere near a fucking kid,’ he said knowingly.
Brand was at his best, though, when padding for time from backstage as techies were setting up for bands, ad libbing like crazy yet consistently finding the funny. His banter with pal Fielding, especially, was priceless.
Fielding appeared on stage, uncredited, as hard-ass New York cop Raymond Boombox, delivering his ‘anti’-drug message, which might have been more weird than hilarious – an epitaph for much of his output – though it was entertaining watching people figure out who was behind the gaffer-tape ’tache.
He’d been preceded by Jack Whitehall, who seems to be channelling a lot of Michael McIntyre with his upper-middle-class observational incredulity. After something of a slow start, he found his pace with some material about bullying, an old and obvious gag about the campaigning wristbands notwithstanding.
Amstell injected a bold note of cynicism into proceedings. Reverting to his Pop World snidery, he questioned Jessie J’s motives in shaving her head for Red Nose Day – and even whether charity was the best way to combat the complicated problems of poverty. It was nicely contrary, but he could have used more time to expand, especially after dealing with the gear-change of following Kasabian.
After his tumultuous week at the hands of The Sun, Jason Manford delivered a solid but unspectacular observational set that probably won’t be remembered on such a packed night. Eddie Izzard was far more successful. Even if some of his initial flights of fancy into the topics of human sacrifices and Charles I’s reign didn’t quite land, his unique thought processes are always fascinating, and after padding around a while, he finally found the vein of wit, to use an entirely inappropriate metaphor.
Jimmy Carr did what Jimmy Carr does, pointed if unprincipled one-liners – some that he’s been doing for a while, and some new – accompanied by his distinctive heehaw laugh. He set a high gag-rate in the limited timeslot, and if he was setting the taste bar low, so Frankie Boyle could stomp it down through the ground.
‘I’m genuinely surprised to be here,’ he said, surely echoing the thoughts of many a BBC executive. And indeed, he was cut from the ‘almost-live’ broadcast after being brutally offensive with every perfectly-crafted line. Criticising the hypocrisy of Comic Relief while much of the West profits from Third-World strife might have touched a nerve, but it was an harsh anti-Queen setup that provoked the greatest boos of discontent among a surprisingly monarchist crowd. ‘A joke is just a proposition, a “what if”?’ he explained, as he’s probably quite used to doing. But it’s the quality of the punchlines that determine whether real offence is caused, and unlike most low-aiming wannabe shock comics, his sharp writing scores on that count.
Doc Brown, despite being the lowest-profile act on the bill, showed why he deserved to be there with a brief set featuring his boldly political comedy rap about poor tea-making technique, before the comedy was closed with John Bishop making reference to his own, more strenuous, fundraising efforts of last year. Despite spending most of his set doing the admin of emphasising the positive aspects of the night, it was Bishop, not Boyle, who caused the evening’s biggest controversy... by dissing Man Utd, since football is far more important than who rules Britain.
Still, if there was a Champions’ League for comedians, all of this line-up would be in it, ensuring the quality was maintained even if the viewer’s concentration ebbed and flowed over the long night.
|Date of live review: Thursday 7th Mar, '13|
Review by Steve Bennett
Show - Film -
Show - Tour - Wednesday 8th Oct, '08-
Show - Misc live shows -
Wednesday 1st Oct, '03-
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Show - Edinburgh Fringe 2002 -
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So people are crticising Noel? Well you co-write a series as good as Boosh! The man's a genius.
Noel you have seriously, seriously let us all down my friend. We do not believe you didn't know the tickets had gone on sale for your solo tour and the Boosh film had better be bloody marvellous if you want to get out of this one with your rep intact. The World awaits..
Oh my giddy antelope socks! Fielding in a one man show taking in the North! How very retro!
Saw Noel at a fundraiser in N7 last nite where he was headlining. Sadly the first few rows were packed full of dead-eyed fan girls who slightly ruined his set for the majority of the audience or anyone who wasn’t a Boosh obsessive. If, as he said himself on stage, Noel has not done stand up for over a year then I can see why! Despite powerhouse charm and an unexpectedly vulnerable stage persona Noel’s various vocal characters were often drowned out by the fan girls' squiffy demands for Boosh references and his attention. If Noel can learn to subdue them without pandering to their catcalls then the rest of us could well be drawn into his strange and often surreal flights of fancy featuring confused moths trapped in greenhouses and maverick New York cops just 1 inch high being usurped by those even smaller. I hope he gains enough confidence to continue his often very amusing tales without just dropping off midflow to engage the fan girls in banal conversations during his set. Highlights for us were bizarre yet emotionally involving tales of odd woodland creatures, such as silver grey monkeys always looking backwards and the Lord of the Marsh’s forlorn search for a non bestial bride to marry on the morrow, despite his handicap of backwards rams legs. A rough diamond let down by his apparent need for affirmation from the devoted, Noel let himself down a little last night, perhaps through nerves? Happily there remained enough great lines to make us keen to see him do stand up again.
Coming across Noel Fielding is like finding a minute child made of golden light, playing many homemade instruments while living in a rainbow coloured half shell! He is a magnificent, sharp and sparkly omnipresence radiating an undying, never ending splendour all on his own, anytime, anywhere, anyplace or what have you. I love Noel, like a brother would love his own brother, or like a child would love his very own collection of ladder-coins perhaps?
Very very funny, some improv which was amazing. However, if you look at past gigs, its very similar. A lot of his stand up has been seen before.
Noel Fielding isn't only one of the UK's greatest comedians but he's also unique. I don't think I've ever been to a gig quite like his, Some comedians will talk about their life and make jokes about it, Noel's gig included him running around pretending to be a moth and telling stories of when he was a quirky detective only 1inch high. Noel is genius, he's so individual and that's the great thing about him.
He could be brilliant, but he's far too bullied by the hoards of Boosh fans that turn up to his gigs, meaning you'll have heard everything he has to say on You Tube, because when he finally throws in some (hilarious and slightly riskier) new material, it gets a lukewarm reception and people shout for old jokes or worse 'crimps' from the Boosh and when he refuses it's met with the terse response of 'Julian would'. It's a shame, because if he was braver and just gave two fingers to them he'd be an amazing comic. And he irritatingly fiddles with his hair non-stop, I'm wasn't sure if it was supposed to be coquettish or just nervous.
|'I went slightly insane making this.. I erased my personality'
Noel Fielding talks about his new E4 show, Luxury Comedy
11/01/2012 Permanent link
The Secret Policemans Ball 2012
The Scribblings of a Madcap Shambleton, by Noel Fielding
Channel 4's Comedy Gala
Bunny And The Bull
The Mighty Boosh Live 2
Mighty Book Of Boosh
The Mighty Boosh: Series 3
Mighty Boosh: Complete BBC Series 3
AD/BC: A Rock Opera
The Secret Policeman's Ball
2006 live show
The Mighty Boosh Live
Noel Fielding: Voodoo Hedgehog Perrier nominee
Bunny And The Bull
Misc live shows
Secret Policeman's Ball 2006
Teenage Cancer Trust Benefit 2007
Mighty Boosh Live
Mighty Boosh Live 2008