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Live at the Hasty Pudding Theatre

Emo Philips

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Album Review

"I was in the park today, minding my own business — staring at people, trying to make their brains explode." "You know who I hate more than anyone else? Indian givers. No, I take that back." "How many people here have telekinetic powers? Raise my hand." These are just a few examples of Emo Philips' looping, wide-eyed act, where his kooky idiosyncrasies mask the pointed cynicism and prescient observations that are the foundations of his sense of his humor. This Sony release compiles two of Philips' previous albums, E=MO2 and Live at the Hasty Pudding Theatre. A typical Philips bit evolves in the first person and finds the comic recollecting his daily experiences in a shifting mixture of scathing one-liners ("I still remember the last words of my grandfather: 'A truck!'") and meandering story lines. A portion of "Why Our Family Is Nice" unfolds as a seemingly innocuous story about finding change to make a copy. His casual delivery and numerous, curious impersonations mask the lack of an apparent punch line, so that, when it finally drops, the bit is even funnier. Philips' occasional forays into comedy songs (the hilarious "Downtown Downer's Grove," for example) are perfectly paced to break up the purposeful monotony of his delivery. Recommended for fans of Andy Kaufman or Steven Wright.

Biography

Genre: Comedy

Years Active: '90s, '00s

One of the strangest (in looks, presentation, and attitude) of the current crop of new comics, Emo Philips has reached something of a semi-stardom through his numerous cable-TV appearences. He takes the warped sensibility of Andy Kaufman to the next extreme. A bit like listening to an extraterrestrial...
Full bio
Live at the Hasty Pudding Theatre, Emo Philips
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