David O'Doherty at Latitude 2010

Note: This review is from 2010

Review by Bruce Dessau

‘My name is Florence and this is my machine,’ David O'Doherty says, with the tunes he bashes out on his tiny Yamaha keyboard offering more modest production values than the day’s Latitude headliners.

The shaggy-haired Irishman also explained that he has been gigging a lot lately, and while some material was well-worn he is about as match-fit as a comedian can get, which showed in a great performance.

Outside stand-up, O'Doherty has also been promoting his quirky book, 100 Facts About Pandas. He treated us to some brilliantly silly excerpts, as well as extracting laughs from recalling how one ill-prepared radio interviewer thought it was a serious nature study, and introduced him as an anthropologist, albeit getting the wrong ‘-olgy’ too.

But there is something of the Desmond Morris about O'Doherty. Much of his humour unpicks the oddness of human behaviour and the embarrassing situations he finds himself in. His smartest anecdote involves travelling on the quiet train carriage and feeling that his fellow passengers are simply ‘waiting for things to kick off’. Which they inevitably do.

Despite appearing to be a master of lo-fi geekiness, O'Doherty is as sharp at observational humour as Michael McIntyre, noting the universality in the way people send texts or use superlatives such as ‘awesome’ too much these days. Some purists might take the comparison as a superlative insult, but it is meant as a compliment.

Review date: 25 Jul 2010
Reviewed by: Bruce Dessau

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