In Bed With My Brother spend the largest portion of this, notably their third Edinburgh show, conducting a kind of aural warfare on their audience. Caterwhauling into the microphones and tossing props with abandon, they regularly complain that the venue has set a decibel limit on their performance but they nonetheless manage to assault the senses for their full hour. The point of this assault is to show us that this is their time, most of us have paid for it, and we're going to experience whatever they want us to experience.
The point of this assault is to show us that this is their time, most of us have paid for it, and we're going to experience whatever they want us to experience.
The running narrative throughout the show focuses somewhat on a search for meaning and intent. Framed as it is around 90s dance act The KLF and the incident in which they burned a million pounds without explaining why, the show repeatedly feels like the act intentionally clutching for overarching statements and failing to reach them. However, when they eventually make their point, they make it more powerfully than just about any show seen on the Fringe.
This isn't just a show with a message though, it's intensely funny when it wants to be and consistently one of the quickest and most entertaining hours on the Fringe. The narrative structure of the show means that it can sometimes wear thin in its middle third once the audience start to become desensitised, but it is also another element that makes the show fascinatingly and thrillingly anti-good taste. If you've spent the day watching vanilla stand-ups try to get their own Dave shows, Tricky Second Album is a great way to cleanse the palate.
The depressing truth omitted from the show is that the KLF didn't leave the industry forever. Bill Drummond gave interviews in which he stated that he regretted burning the million pounds. In 2017, The KLF briefly reunited to promote their new book. They did this in their own avant-garde way, but it was still a fundamental u-turn on their rallying cry. Tricky Second Album is a phenomenal show and one hopes, purely for the sake of its integrity, that its creators stand by its message.