Flight of the Conchords exist in a pretty rare space, balancing on a tightrope between a legitimate musical act and a comedy double-act.
While others, such as Spinal Tap, have explored this territory, Tuesday night’s performance at Portsmouth Guildhall showed that Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement have refined their material to excel in this hilarious niche.
Accompanied by the New Zealand National Orchestra – Nigel – on cello the pair presented a 90-minute show, which included around 15 songs, the vast majority being new to the audience. While the additional musician helped to flesh out some of the songs, it’s the personalities involved that added a warmth and heart to the show.
An acknowledgement of the nine-year gap since the band’s last TV appearance helped to frame some of the new songs like Father and Son, and the improvised jazz of Shady Rachel. It’s clear that growing old is informing the duo’s material, but it’s also still contemporary with a brilliant observation of workplace sexism in Deana and Ian. The hits were also slotted in amongst the banter with a touching rendition of Bowie and the set closer of Robots. Funnier than most comedy acts and more proficient than many bands, Conchords is a must if you can still get a ticket for tonight’s performance at the Guildhall