Tag: rap

REVIEW: Matt Dyktynski and Bang Mango Cools in EDIBLE PETS

Guaranteed good festival fun

By Tania Herbert

As an audience member, you are one of “The Keno Dancers” waiting for your performance at the Mordialloc Welcome Club. Sharing your backstage green room are Matt and Mango – the wannabe rock duo Edible Pets. Disgruntled musician Matt “Dyk-something-ski” and his sidekick Bang Mango Cools (name changed after a mind-altering trip to Thailand… despite being a middle-class bloke from Diamond Valley) are about to perform their final show, and it’s not exactly in style in the back room of an outer-suburbs pokies venue.

Edible Pets

We travel with Matt and Mango on their journey back through 25 years of musical mediocrity: from 80s’ teens to 90s’ try-hard rappers, to naughties’ new-agers and finally the low point of X-Factor wannabees.

Edible Pets: The Farewell Tour for MICF is nicely constructed, has good flow, great pace and comedy, and lovely audience interaction. Mango played the “Silent Bob” of the duo beautifully, with superb coming timing and understated humor in nice contrast to Matt’s tirade against the world.

The little snippets of song throughout added to the sense of pace and were well-executed, though there seemed to be a few missed comic opportunities in some of the music. However, the “pay off” song at the conclusion of the show was well worth the wait, and Mango’s description of his masterpiece- “It’s f’ing anthetic”- is well deserved.

If you’re in town for the comedy run, this is a good one to chuck on the list. Sweet, light, and personable, it’s like watching a couple of your funniest mates messing around with guitars and awesomely bad mullet wigs. And it’s probably the only time you’ll get the opportunity to see someone rap “the Little Drummer Boy”.

Edible Pets: The Farewell Tour can be seen at The Victoria Hotel 28 March – 21 April, Tues-Sat 8:30pm, Sun 7:30pm.Ticketmaster 1300 660 013, www.comedyfestival.com.au

Review: JO LOTH in Mind Games

Intense, evocative – and enlightening…

By Bradley Storer

To the straining sound of discordant guitar, a desperate woman trapped in material resembling a strait-jacket plunges through the performance space of The Butterfly Club. Before our eyes this lost soul escapes her confinement, and with the simple addition of a blonde wig transforms into the domineering Dr Jolene Mindtrick who guides us through the first steps on this journey – the mind plays tricks, she tells us, and we must learn to control it.

Performer Jo Loth, who emerges immediately after the appearance of Dr Mindtrick to speak directly to the audience, has crafted a confronting cabaret work based on her interviews with sufferers of mental illnesses like depression and bipolar disorder. It is also partly based on Loth’s own experiences, she openly admits at the beginning of the evening. 

A cavalcade of characters and their experiences and ways of coping with their disorders are introduced, each one explored in heart-breakingly realistic fashion through a variety of different original songs. The wide range of styles which appear, including opera, country and rap, seem particularly appropriate as different expressions of the broad spectrum of psychotic illness.

This is cabaret in its most intimate form, as Loth delves into the most and delicate aspects of the human psyche. Although the show remains, on the whole, light-hearted, it is not a show which elicits deep belly laughs from what it depicts: we are placed directly into the mindset of someone teetering close to the edge of complete breakdown or suicide. When Loth enacts parts of her own struggle with depression onstage, it feels like a precious gift is being given to the audience – we are not merely being told what it is like to suffer mental illness, but are being shown and made to experience this landscape of despair directly.

Loth is an incredibly skilled and committed performer, swapping between personas at a moment’s notice and bringing each character to life with rich physicality and a distinctive vocal quality. Her accompanist Damien Slingsby is a wonder, accompanying both on piano and electric guitar, expertly beat-boxing and even singing a song of his own which touches the heart with its simplicity and sincere emotion.

The reoccuring spectre of Dr Mindtrick, a symbol of the repression and denial which prevents sufferers from reaching out and seeking help for their pain, is a sharp and powerful reminder of the show’s primary message: the hidden and devastating pain of mental illness can only begin to heal if we acknowledge its existence. Mind Games, in bringing that message to light, is incredibly moving and ultimately uplifting.

Date: Thurs 7th to Sun 10th June
Time: Thurs to Sat at 7pm, Sun at 6pm
Ticket price:$23/$20 conc/$18 group

Venue: The Butterfly Club, 204 Bank St, South Melbourne

Bookings: www.thebutterflyclub.com