“The guys are genuinely funny”
On a small, well-lit stage, deep in subterranean Edinburgh, The Glummer Twins start their set with Just Turned Sixty and Taking it Badly: a really good bemoaning of being the owner of an ageing body. Through the medium of beat poetry and music, the Glummer Twins (David Harmer and Ray Globe) take a look back to 60’s childhood, 70’s aftershave and 80’s yuppies. They ask the important question of whatever happen to the mods? Autobiography is included, such as after moving from south London, the warm welcome David received from his new Doncaster school chums.
The Twins look forward to the future with the poems Old Bloke Blues and Fiery Jack: the latter a must-hear for any pharmacist or person taking a large range of medications. Groans and laughs are generated in equally generous measure as we follow the puntastic adventures of poet-noir detective Percy Shelly – private dick. The poems comes thick and fast, with fifteen being delivered over the hour.
The theme of the show is ageing and reminiscing because there comes a time in life, theirs in particular, that there is a lot to look back on but not so much to look forward too. The Glummer Twins state they have been coming to the Fringe for thirty one years and obviously love what they do. The audience are in the safe hands of veterans. Both were members of the performance group Circus of Poets, which in the 1980s appeared on nation television and toured Europe.
The style of comedy is, fair to say, gentle. That does not mean unfunny: far from it. While Percy Shelly is undoubtedly the comedic highlight, the spirit and black humour of South Yorkshire is also evoked. Whatever will happen to Derek the Trainspotter? One also has to ask, in the wake of the recent Brexit vote, whether there is deeper meaning to the poems Mediterranean Homesick Blues and Speak Scandi?
Harmer and Globe are good, solid performers who deliver rhymes and laughter. Globe handles the musical side with electric guitar, pedal beat boxes and shares vocals, while Harmer’s performance is spoken word and costume change. The show is squarely aimed at older generations. They know that their style and material are not going to rock the foundations of comedy but that does not matter. The guys are genuinely funny. Watching The Glummer Twins is a fine way to wind up a morning on the Fringe.
P.S. – if one wants to know the origins of the name, Google “The Glummer Twins” and see what comes up.
Reviewer: Martin Veart (Seen 26 August)