Mseve Higgins

a bit more of a structure and pumps us with a little more laughing gas as he considers the repercussions of his divorce and an incident from his teen years that yields much mirth. The guy has got a barnstormer in him somewheres. (Brian Donaldson) Underbelly. 0844 545 8252. until 24 Aug. 10.15pm, £10—£12.50 (£9—£l 1.50).

Graeme Thomas 00 Pedestrian material (including gags about actual pedestrians) is churned out by this Stand regular. Although he begins well with his attempts to ‘start smoking‘. his quickly rattled-out patter about office temping. daytime telly and shopping trolleys might perhaps make good photocopier chat. but sadly isn‘t developed. new or interesting enough to keep the audience‘s attention up. (Claire Sawers) The Stand Ill & IV. 558 7272. until 24 Aug. 4.40pm. £7 (£6). Greg Fleet sees He's Aussie. ex- Neighbours stock and a reformed drug abuser but none of these facts are important. Eschewing high concepts. he moulds observations about Edinburgh. confessional soul-baring and deconstructions of controversial humour into anecdotes that rip laughter right out of the throat. He‘s a consummate pro and somehow his admissions of storytelling licence make him seem more genuine. (Suzanne Black) Gilded Balloon Tet‘iot. 668 I 633. until 25 Aug. 9.30pm.

£9. 50—£l 0. 50 (£8. 50—£9. 50).

A Guide To Sexual Misery

oo More chatty lecture than stand- up set. friendly Viennese therapist- comedian Wolfgang Weinberger gives

relationship advice. like why and when things go wrong in the bedroom. And what women really want. Using an audience Q&A. some gender cliches. scientific research and the song about ‘A Lover With a Slow Hand‘. this caring agony uncle wants to send couples home happy. Pleasant but not mind-blowing. (Claire Sawers) Sil‘t’l”! 'I‘ei'iot Plaee. 0870 241 0136. until 24 Aug. 9pm. £8.50 (£7.50).

The Guru see With his ‘Madonna‘ sidekick. Guru John Popolini ((iJl’) is determined to make us fulfil our potential and open up a wealth of opportunity. Coincidentally in the same room that Jae/(son 's Way got us all hyped up on motivation. Popolini whips up a character storm with fine laughs and bad advice aplenty. (Brian Donaldson) Underbelly. 0844 545 8252. until 24 Aug. l . I 5pm. £8.50—£9.50 (£7.50—£8.50).

Hal Cruttenden 000 For a man apparently obsessed by the little things in life. Cruttenden tackles some pretty weighty subjects: the Irish troubles. WWII. death. He also worries about his big face. blokey physique and girly voice. wanting to be political. but unable ‘to be bothered to do the reading‘. Instead. he‘s nebulously angry and liable to erupt like a volcano. A turbulent show. punctuated by snappy one-liners and a great finale. (Hannah Adcock ) Assembly Rooms. 623 3030. until 25 Aug. 7. 35pm,

£10.50—£l [.50 (£9. 50—£l0. 50). Harbingers 00 Taking their cue from the absurd patter of the Mighty Boosh and the awkward naturalism of

The Office. this trio of fresh-faced. well- spoken chaps make a decent but unoriginal stab at rejuvenating the sketch format. While the writing is consistently sharp (listen out for the best comedy hairdresser‘s name ever). the overall effect is largely mystifying. (Nick Mitchell) Sweet liCA. 0870 24/ 0136. until 24 Aug. 6.35pm. £8 (£7).

The lmprophecy Chronicles 0000 Despite a denture-mangling title. this crew of young lads delivers a straightforward improv show. taking turns to act out skits based on audience suggestion. What sets them apart is their great chemistry and the genuine sense of joy they bring to the stage. Although a few sketches slightly outstay their welcome. there are very few misfires. and their skills are surprisingly well honed. (Murray Robertson) C central. 0845 260 1234. tmtil 25 Aug. 9.35pm. £7.50—£9.50 (£6.50— [8. 50).

Isabel Fay ee There‘s an energetic and quirky charm about Fay‘s set of oddball characters that makes it hard to hate them. but with a little extra work on the script. we could have loved these failures a bit more. The arachnophobe drafted in for a spider exhibition is a warped delight but the former Mini Pops star reuniting with her old pal gets tired within seconds. (Brian Donaldson) I’leasant'e Courtyard. 556 6550. until 25 Aug. 4.45pm. £8.50—£9.50 (17—18).

Ismo Leikola 00 The Finnish stand-up has the stage persona of a deceptively cuddly. long-hairedflair-nail; which makes his irreverent and slightly risque material seem even more shocking. Despite starting well with some observational belters. his nonchalant style proves too relaxed to keep the punters‘ attention. For someone front a country known for its suicide rate. his deadpan demeanour is a little alarming. (Suzanne Black) Baby Belly. 0844 545 8252. until 24 Aug. [0.30pm. £9—£l0 (£8—£9).

lsy Suttie eeeo Beginning with a song and spiel about early career goals. Suttie takes her crazily well-crafted characters and choruses to their hilarious musical conclusion and has a grateful audience laughing all the way. A particular highlight is Suttie‘s performance of Amy Winehouse‘s prissy cousin. Yvonne. Strange. sparkling comedy. (Carmody Wilson) I’leasanee (’om‘tyard. 556 6550. until 25 Aug. 4pm. £8. 50 «£9. 50 (£7--£8).

It Is Rocket Science! «0

a jolly hockey sticks approach to her show. Helen Keen makes a good list at keeping the laughs bubbling along with this haphazard look at science and its wacky ways. A sidekick is on hand to help out with some shadow puppetry and a human wormhole in the audience is a filter for Keen‘s light sense of fun. (Brian Donaldson) (ii/(led Balloon Yet-int. 668 I633. until 25 Aug. 12.30pm. £8—£9 (£7-£8).

Jody Kamali ee Engaging in concept. Kamali‘s show is narrated by his key character. Terry the Bristolian handyman. ()n a backpacking holiday around India. Terry meets an international gallery of fellow travellers. all played (with varying plausibility) by the British- Iranian comedian. There are occasional laughs but too much of the material is undercooked and aimless. Those accents


just aren‘t funny enough to survive without good lines to give them. (Sam Heal y) Sweet (irassmarket. 0870 24] 0136. until 24 Aug. 7.20pm. £7.50—£8.50 (£6.50—£7.50).

John Bishop .0. Last year Scouse sales director Bishop ditched his job to go pro on the comedy circuit. The office‘s loss was comedy‘s gain and his warm blether hits its stride with an energetic and funny show. Embarrassing tales of his panto debut. having a son who can‘t kick a football and lots of evidence to prove Liverpudlians aren‘t all shell-suit wearing ‘robbin’ fuckers‘. prove that the career gamble was worth it. (Claire Sawers) Pleasanee Courtyard. 556 6550. until 24 Aug. I 0.20pm. £10—£12 (£8.50—£10.50).

John Gordillo see There are some gems in Gordillo‘s routine. which showcases him as a quick-witted and eloquent performer with a few killer lines up his sleeve. Universal matters like free- range chickens and the lunacy of circuses ring true for everyone; his father‘s communism less so. and this lingering focus on family issues reduces the laugh count in a good show that Could have been exceptional. (Emma Newlands) Pleasani‘e Dome. 556 6550. until 25 Aug. 8.45pm. [10—17] (£8. 50-19. 50). Johnny Candon coo A lean. likeable and sporadically funny show that rises to the challenge set by its timeslot. Dubliner Candon riffs on themes of his adoption. fatherhood and arachnophobia with wit and easy charm. He‘s one of those sweet-talkers who can say ‘fuck‘ to a grandmother and have her thinking what a nice young man he is. Some one- liners are hilarious. but shambolic segues and overlong set-ups muddy the mix. (Sam Healy) The Stand II, 558 7272. until 24 Aug. [2.15pm. £7 (£6).

Juliet Meyers 00 While vaguely interesting. Meyers‘ tales about travelling to India to learn more about her family‘s history can hardly be described as side- splitting. All too often you find yourself waiting for a punchline that doesn‘t come. while the fact that this London comic has to ask her audience to stop ‘heckling her telepathically‘ doesn‘t exactly inspire confidence. (Tom Maxwell) Holyrood Too @ Faith. 225 9764. until 24 Aug (not 18). 7pm. £5 (£4). Lady Garden oooo With Adrian Edmondson and Jennifer Saunders in the crowd. it‘s no surprise to leam that the cast list revealed that one of the young comic actresses has the surname ‘Edmondson‘. But the talent on stage was spread widely throughout some spot-on sketches about office shenanigans and tabloid reportage. Oh. and Ben Elton was there too. no doubt lapping up the troupe's little bit of politics. (Brian Donaldson) Gilded Balloon Teviot. 668 I633. tutti! 25 Aug. 4.30pm. £9—£ I 0 (£849).

Lloyd Woolf eeee Woolf‘s head is stuffed with so much ridiculous nonsense that he couldn‘t write just one set. Instead he brings us ten wonderful comedy nuggets from previously rejected show ideas. There are no big. brash laughs in this whimsical journey of surreal meanderings. but you‘ll find yourself captivated and hanging on his every foolishly sparkling word. (Jill Peacock) Pleasance Courtyard. 556 6550. until 25 Aug. 2.45pm. £10—£ll (£8.50—f9.50).