The West

Sloss cuts through the dross
Daniel Sloss


Daniel Sloss

3.5 stars

Mt Lawley Bowling Club

Review Craig McKeough

Daniel Sloss seemed genuinely surprised to be greeted by a full house on his opening night.

As the Scottish comedian pointed out, he doesn't have a high profile in this country. He isn't on the telly and has only been to Perth once before - at last year's Perth International Comedy Festival.

But he filled the main room at the Mt Lawley Bowling Club on an unusually wet Wednesday night when the festival offered eight other alternative shows. This might say something about the power of social networking but it also makes it clear that Perth loves comedy and is eager to support a three-week festival full of it.

It should be said that Sloss carried with him a substantial reputation as a rising star on the international comedy scene and is immensely popular in his homeland.

And he rewarded the local audience who took a chance on him with a sparkling hour of sharp observations from his view of the world.

He's 23 and single so naturally much of the humour revolves around the life of a late Gen-Y man - jokes about his relationship with high-achieving parents, Xbox and the importance of mobile phones in our lives tap into the issues of his generation. The show is something of smorgasbord of this and other random thoughts.

But the broader theme tackles bigger issues, which fall loosely under what was his original name for this show - Arsehole (he changed it to Stand-Up to make it easier to live up to his billing).

Sloss defends his right to be an arsehole, that is to hold unpopular opinions, which he suggests in his case are for the greater good. His main point - which is competently and humorously argued - is that it is far too easy for people to have children and we should be considering a system of compulsory vasectomies of 13-year-olds. Any man wanting to reproduce would have to go before a panel to make his case to have the operation reversed. This would solve a few of the world's problems, he says.

The dangers of this fair-haired, blue-eyed young man arguing in favour of eugenics, even in jest, is not lost on Sloss. With a twinkle in his eye, he reckons Hitler would have been a big fan of his work.

I don't know if he's tried this joke in Poland where the response might be quite different but in Perth, his clever, self-deprecating humour and a liberal dose of crudity ensures he gets away with it.

Sloss is an engaging performer. He does not deliver a groundbreaking routine, but he keeps the laughs coming for an hour and his final feelgood tale about gay penguins ensures we all walk out with a smile on our faces.

Daniel Sloss appears at Mt Lawley Bowling Club at 7pm until Saturday and has added an extra show at the Astor Lounge on Sunday at 8.30pm.

The West Australian

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