David Trent: Spontaneous Comedian ★★★

Jay Richardson - The Scotsman, 7th August 2012

ONE of the more ironically titled festival offerings, this stunning debut marries slick multimedia with the sort of bold, upfront attitude that usually heralds a major new Fringe talent or instinctive fantasist.

David Trent may be both, albeit with a significant dollop of self-abasement undercutting the cocksure bluster. His show features a pulsating soundtrack and rapidly cutting visuals, affording it vital energy throughout, and there’s no hesitation or half-measures in his hypnotic mix of live and captured performance.

When the schoolteacher opens with a bizarre safety instruction video for children, featuring a woman hurling a melon from a great height, it sets the pattern for a delightfully perverse, mischievous hour in which you have absolutely no idea what’s coming next. This proved too disorienting for a couple of disruptive punters on the night I attended, as he playfully skirted the offensive.

But it’s the many offbeat, risk-taking elements of this production that make it so compelling, such as the sequence dedicated to the inept guitar-swinging skills of At the Drive-In’s Omar Rodríguez-López, or the midwifery skills of Chris Rock taken to ridiculous extremes.