There’s no knowing in which direction any ACMS night will go, though if it is a failure, it will be a noble one.
The glue that holds the entirely surreal night together consists of comperes Thom Tuck and John-Luke Roberts, who by turns seem to love and despise each other, step on each other’s jokes, and set the tone for the anarchic atmosphere that is the backbone of the night. They also take you through the long-standing ‘permitted heckles’ at ACMS - these are excellent, including lines such as ‘we appreciate what you’re trying to do’, and bring you into the group: ACMS has a cult following, one into which you feel initiated rather than excluded.
To give an example of the kind of thing that happens there, though it changes each night, and often the acts don’t know what they’re going to do until they’re onstage, I will take you some of last night’s highlights. There was Lolly, spouting nonsense as an idiotically earnest keyboard warrior, The Herbert, whose very long arms and sponge eyes were inexplicably hilarious, and a song about a skin sofa from Jay Foreman. Essentially, everything you will see there will be bizarre, inventive and most likely very funny. The regular ACMS performers (or ‘the ACMS board’) read like a who’s who of the best alternative comics on the scene, so you’re generally in good (if drunken) hands, as you are with Tuck and Roberts as they preside over their hour of the ridiculous.
If you want to see something different, fun, and uncertain, this is the show for you. These five stars come with a warning however - there’s no knowing in which direction any ACMS night will go, though if it is a failure, it will be a noble one.