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July 2005

So, the beginnings of a blog. A travel diary published for those people who have the patience for such things. The type who not only look at other people’s overseas photos, but ask questions beginning with “Which art gallery…?” and “So she is related to…?”

Just so you know, I’m planning to indulge in the kind of floral loquaciousness typical of the fuzzy-brained traveller who fails to realize that not every physical journey has to be a heart-of-darkness-esque spiritual journey into literary hell. (“Edinburgh’s most famous landmark hunches over this ancient city with avuncular familiarity, casting its comforting shadow over the late afternoon coffee-tasters and caber-tossers. i think i’ve found the genetic source of my ginger pubes…” etc) And that no one really cares about your fucking spiritual journey anyway.

To begin again: I’m in Edinburgh. Which is in Scotland. I’ve been here for 3 days. Which feel like 6. I’m not-very-well, but I’m always not-very-well before shows. I think it’s psychosomatic, but maybe it’s just all in my head.

The venue I’m going to be playing is part of the Uni of Edinburgh. It is both neo-gothic and totally fucking ace. Two hundred years old, perhaps. The building is like a warren. Or a gavin. Or a barry. Loads of rooms, all of which are in the final stages of being converted into theatres and bars. And everywhere you look my silly head on bright pink posters. I’ve finally reached omnipresence. I can now retire. (But really, I can’t believe there are other people doing my publicity; I feel almost extraneous.) (Which could be an interesting title for a road movie starring Kate Hudson.)

Dark Side will be playing in the biggest room at the Gilded Balloon, the debating chamber: ceiling like a chapel, balconies on 3 sides. Amazing. In contrast to the ornate old-ness is a huge lighting rig and bigass sound system. Floor is wood and the stage is only about 5 foot high… so we’ll see how often I can fall of it before I need surgery.

Tomorrow morning the piano arrives. It is to be a Yamaha, and it is to be white. Roll over Elton, I wanna make you my bitch. I thought I might get a whiteboard marker and write on it during the show. Hmmm, as long as it sound bright and sparkly and doesn’t break when I hit the shit out of it, I don’t care.

I am staying in Marchmont with my friends, Neil, Jane and Cam. They are both nice and have a coffee machine.

Orright. More in a couple of days perhaps. Leave a comment if you have something to say. I like feeling like I have friends.

Hope you like my website. It’s kind of informative, eh.

t.x

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Orrighty.

This is my blog.

Which means I have to think of interesting stuff to say.

Which is shit.

Blogs are meant to be creative outlets for people who have stuff to say but no forum in which to express it. Which is the opposite of my issue. I have too many fucking forums and have to think of shit to say when I’d quite happily just have a cup of chai and a nice lie down.

Why have I got a blog?

Just shut up for one fucking second of your life, Minchin.

Good point.

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“Irreverent”, “potty mouthed”, “sophisticated” and “polysyllabic” are favourite terms of critics when reviewing ‘Dark Side’. After seeing Mr Minchin in action it’s not hard to see why. ‘Dark Side’ is a mix of pointed social comment, ribaldry, slapstick and song that cascades over the audience. Beat poetry fuses with anthems crying out for a stadium full of addled lighter bearing peaceniks. Anger at the world is interwoven with insights into Minchin’s romantic nature; all hidden behind the facade of a rock’n’roll nerd trapped in a classically trained body. Best of all, the audience is kept enthralled and constantly amused by the quirky base lyrics set to impeccably tinkled melodies.

Minchin is articulate, with an obvious love of language, entendre and a keen interest in anatomy. He gets away with heathen attacks on the “doctrines of monotheistic religions” in his ditty 10 Foot Cock And A Few Hundred Virgins by his simple virtues of charm, a good voice and the manner of a lovable little scamp. He writes love songs for the lonely, the repressed and the perverse with songs ranging from extolling the virtues of cavorting with “the delectable, inflatable you” to the joy of pain.

Minchin maintains a curious mix of world weary cynicism and hopeful optimism best espoused by his Live Aid/8 peace offering to the Israeli and Palestinian peoples with its simple refrain of “We don’t eat pigs, You don’t eat pigs, Why don’t we not eat pigs together?” A simple solution to a complex problem but as Minchin paraphrases, every answer is the basis of another fucked up cliche.

Part stand-up, part gig, ‘Dark Side’ is fantastic cabaret; ideally suited to late venues and patrons with all that this entails. ‘Dark Side’ is a series of seemingly unconnected vignettes but a show that enables the audience to make its own connections while having a hearty belly laugh, a titter and beer.

(Darien O’Reilly – DB Magazine)