Elisa Brinkman, Groove Guide' Keating's curious mix of self-deprecation, slight awkwardness and what he himself classes as "low energy" comedy was offset by an undercurrent of self-assuredness and world-worn wisdom'open/close
"You just missed my best 10 minutes," deadpanned James Keating to a smattering of latecomers who arrived after the opening punchlines of his latest show.
Fortunately for them, it wasn't his best ten minutes by a long shot, as the 2011 Billy T Award nominee warmed up a thinnish yet eager crowd in the intimate setting at the Q Vault with a collection of tried-and-trues before heading into the material of GSOH.
This set was based around giving the audience an insider's view into the world of comedy; how stand-up jokes make it through the ranks into a final show, and how a comedian takes stock of the world around him.
Keating's curious mix of self-deprecation, slight awkwardness and what he himself classes as "low energy" comedy was offset by an undercurrent of self-assuredness and world-worn wisdom. After half his set, you came to understand that the vaguely offhand delivery is, in actual fact, a tactic he's spent time perfecting; and his material, while pretty vanilla in terms of shock tactics, is layered in a way a cruder comedian simply wouldn't pull off.
Highlights of his set included several jibes at Hamilton, and a collection of very dry one-liners that possibly not everyone got... but were well worth the cover price if you did.