Dave Fulton is a comedian who, similar to the likes of Bill Hicks, has an air about him that sounds constantly disgruntled and annoyed. It’s not part of his shtick, it’s just how he comes across (at least to me), even when he’s not disgruntled or annoyed, and it made it a little harder for me to get into the proceedings. That’s probably part of the reason why - comedy blasphemy, I know - I’ve never been much of a Hicks fan. Fulton, on the other hand, fares a little better (again, at least to me) and although I didn’t find myself laughing nearly as much as the live audience at the recording of “Based On A True Story” (they genuinely seemed to be enjoying themselves and you can’t take that away from Fulton), there were some tracks that stood out to me as great bits.
Originally from the Midwest (which means he pronounces the president’s name “brocka-bamuh”), Fulton has lived in London for 10 years and has brought back with him reports of his adventures abroad. Life in the U.K. has taught him that folks overseas drive crazier, drink harder, and...well...drive crazier and drink harder. Residing abroad has also instilled in him a sincere and true hatred for Canadians (or, as he calls them, Mexicans with sweaters).
There are a lot of things in life that have caused Fulton to become a bit jaded, and for good reason. After hearing how Medicaid screwed him over for life you can’t really blame him for being a bit bitter toward the program and being hit by a car while driving a motorcycle tends to make one wary of the London streets. Often times, though, the focus seemed to be more on the actual venting that comes with the relaying of events that unfolded rather than finding the humor therein. As a result, I spent the majority of the tracks listening without really laughing, feeling like I had been trapped by the guy at the party who’s had a few too many and needs to get some things off of his chest to whomever happens to be within earshot.
That being said, there are a couple of tracks I truly enjoyed, both of which appear in the second half of the CD. One of them is the tale of an Irish friend of Fulton who, as a child, was commanded by an elder to drown a bag of kittens. Yes, I know how horrible it sounds in black and white, but when Fulton explains how the Irish accent makes the story humorous, you can’t deny he has a point. The standout track recalls the time Fulton and his pals, coked up and ready for action, decided to install a peephole in the front door. It’s 12 minutes of great storytelling and really showcases Fulton at his best.
I’ll be the first to admit this album as a whole didn’t strike me like it did many others and it’s very likely I’m in the minority with my ho-hum reaction. I can recommend the “Ireland” and “Subsidizing My Career” tracks and encourage you to check them out. If you like them, go ahead and take the rest of the album for a spin. If not, that’s OK, too.