Ricky Gervais once again returns as the former Wernham Hogg boss, this time he is here to sing and perform with the second incarnation of his fictional band. Packing out the Hammersmith Eventim Apollo for the second night, David Brent gets his former colleague Keith (Ewan MacIntosh) to introduce the band. Gervais brings his band from the new film to the stage for an evening (or 55 minutes) of great tunes which filled the soundtrack to the best comedy of the summer!
Opening up the set with ‘Ooh La La’, everyone suddenly gets singing and the clapping isn’t too far behind. The playlist then brings in the title track ‘Life On The Road’ which is well received, then the mood goes down for ‘Slough’. Rather appropriate for a Friday night concert, ‘Thank Fuck It’s Friday’ gets a great reaction from the crowd. Where would we be if Brent wasn’t offending people, well he is in full force with tracks such as ‘Please Don’t Make Fun Of The Disableds’ and ‘Native American’. Then there are all the awkward talky bits between the songs which does add some more comedy to the festivities. As we go through the set, we then get a guest on stage…
Ben Bailey Smith comes to the stage once again becoming rapper Dom Johnson, his rhymes and raps going over the well titled ‘Equality Street’ and who can forget his lyrics coming over a western song? The songs are so well made, even if they are supposed to produce the most awkward possible factor for those who hear it. The night does seem to recreate some of the big moments of the film, such as the snow falling down during ‘Don’t Cry, Its Christmas’ and just the actions of Smith on stage as he channels Dom Johnson during his 15 minutes on stage. A highlight for me had to be the chap who was dressed up just like Gervais and was moving close to the stage! People were going up to this guy for photos and he was providing a good laugh, but then a number of staff and security managed to move him back away (shame, he was doing well). The night comes to an end with a performance of the track that first showed the world Gervais was a great musician…’Free love Freeway’.
Overall I really enjoyed the set. The songs are well crafted and I loved hearing them live. The band themselves, coming from playing the band in the film, definitely were comfortable on stage and did a superb job. Ben Bailey Smith is a great rapper and his skill (even if the lyrics are madness) is undeniable. Overall, the biggest credit has to be Ricky Gervais as he both channels the character of Brent throughout the night and makes himself a bonafide rock star. The only real problem I had was that the show was incredibly short and I am sure they could have belted out a few more tracks. Great music, better atmosphere and KEITH! KEITH! KEITH! KEITH! KEITH!!
Final Rating: 9/10
Written by Jonjo Cosgrove