Duckworth Lewis Method Brighton review, 20 September 2013

DLM_21_9_14As Thomas Walsh said part way through under the crucifix at St Georges church, the unlikely venue for this 90 minute musical cricket fest, ‘two albums about cricket, how fucking crazy is that?’

The first Duckworth Lewis Method album dates from 2009 and co-incided with the momentous and nervous Ashes tour of that year. For readers unfamiliar with the Ashes, it is the trophy fought for between England and Australia in the five-day version of the game, also known as test matches. Despite their Irish origins, Neil Hannon – whose other musical project is The Divine Comedy – and Walsh of Pugwash, their love of the game and for England has culminated in enough songs to justify a paying audience, hence this short tour of intimate venues.

Duckworth Lewes Method fans – and there are many going by the size of this audience – know the songs only too well. Tellingly, the two requests from the audience were for songs from the first album. ‘Jiggery Pokery’ about the extraordinary phenomenon that was Shane Warne, Australia’s most celebrated and effective leg spinner of all time, is one of the cleverest and vocally trickiest songs in the repertoire but always handled with aplomb by Hannon. Mr Miandad, the second of the requests, chronicling the journey to Pakistan by Hannon and Walsh in a VW camper van to meet with Javed Miandad, one of the Pakistan’s greats, is just a feel-good song.

The show’s final few overs included a song that should have come earlier bearing in mind its subject matter; namely, ‘The Coin Toss’ and a really mischievous rendition of ‘Nudging and Nurdling’, a song that is as inexplicable as is the game of cricket itself. The finale was as fitting as it could be ‘Test Match Special’, a celebration of the BBC’s ball-by-ball cricket commentary so bemusing to many.

By this time the audience had got to its feet leaving Hannon and Walsh with the sense of a winning draw if not victory. Great night.

1 comment so far

  1. […] alone with a piano and guitar at Somerset House and later in Cambridge). We have also seen him do Duckworth Lewis Method with Thomas Walsh in September […]

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