'Songs from the Heart in the Hole of my Bottom' is painfully funny, so funny that moments of awkwardness in which you are usually the only one left laughing are eradicated, because the whole audience is similarly struggling to break free from the frenzy.
I hope for your sake that you’re not familiar with the soul-crushing realisation that your laugh is not actually cute, but enormous and full-bodied and requires you to throw your head back and forth in hysterics as tears roll down your face. If you haven’t already learnt this hard truth about yourself, a visit to Aiden Willcox and Isaac Haigh’s latest comedic endeavour will solve this for you in an instant.
Songs from the Heart in the Hole of my Bottom is painfully funny, so funny that moments of awkwardness in which you are usually the only one left laughing are eradicated, because the whole audience is similarly struggling to break free from the frenzy.
From the opening number, it is instantly clear that these guys are not only riotously hilarious, but clever in their lyrics and comedic timing, and incredibly musically gifted. This is the point at which I would usually complain that they should leave some talent for the rest of us, but this show was such a blast that I will happily continue as an untalented blob if it means shows like this can exist.
Never did I think I’d be so enamoured by two white men scat-singing or mispronouncing Melbourne as “Melbo,” but their greatness became very clear the moment I stopped thinking about the shows I could be watching from my warm bed at home, and fully gave myself away to the theatrics.
Even jokes in the familiar format of “crooner? I hardly know her” were revived in their brilliance, adding to the melody of awkward jokes and lines such as “when the doc does the chop at the tip of your cock” (in the tune of ‘That’s Amore’, of course). And while it was at times especially clear they were, in fact, “keeping it loose up here, folks”, this only added to the masterful on-stage personas they’d created.
Of course, their sweeping numbers about everything from female hair care routines, to mummy issues and being rude to waitstaff (a personal favourite) were perfectly executed. And every one-liner or reaction was perfectly timed with the constant jazz instrumentals orchestrating their show. But really, when a song about peanut butter turns into a surprise (and perfectly smooth) transition into a puppet show, you know you’ve stumbled onto a piece of Comedy Festival magic.
Yet, it was the smaller reactions, the ones that could have been missed if you looked away or checked your phone (which you absolutely should not do in this show) even for a second. It was little lines, such as Aiden’s “you’re stunning” or his regular use of “very true” in response to Isaac’s claims, that made the chemistry between their on-stage personas all the more “de-freakin-licious, as they say”.
Never have I been so against the description of two people as a “big pile of shit,” but in this case it is blasphemy.
The description of Willcox as one of “America’s greatest minds” may seem like a stretch to those who haven’t seen the show, and yet I will happily attest to it. So, when Aiden does his little jazz sway and says, “I’m never going to stop doing this, so I hope it’s still funny to you,” you laugh and you cheer and you look forward to the next one.
I could watch this show tenfold, and then request a television revival so I could watch them over and over again in my lounge room, bedroom, and on the train so I could annoy strangers sitting next to me with my insistent recommendations.
This show really is a must, and knowing the price of, well, everything right now, I don’t say that lightly. Gather your mates, your siblings, you parents, your grandparents and take them to the comedic marvel that is Songs from the Heart in the Hole of my Bottom, and if they don’t laugh, I’ll be waiting at the stage door to take their place.
You can catch Aiden Willcox and Isaac Haigh's Songs from the Heart in the Hole of my Bottom until April 9 as part of this year's Melbourne International Comedy Festival.