Monday, February 13, 2017

Lachlan Patterson's "Live from Venice Beach"

Back in 2010 I bought Jokes to Make Love To, an incredible debut CD by the very talented Lachlan Patterson. I knew nothing about him at the time but was looking for some new comedy and the album had just dropped. Before I could give it a listen Sarah and I took a trip to California. While we were there we stopped by one of my favorite stand-up venues, The Comedy & Magic Club in Hermosa Beach. We were there for one of their “10 Comedians” showcases and Patterson was in the lineup.
There were some great comics there that night (it was also my introduction to Kirk Fox and Brian Scolaro) and Lachlan was one of the standouts. It wasn’t until afterward when we stopped to say hello at his makeshift merch table and I saw - and recognized - the cover of the CDs he was selling that I realized I had just purchased his album a few days prior. #comedykismet
Since then I’ve been keeping an eye and ear out for Lachlan and more of his comedy. Unfortunately because he was based out of - and mostly working in - the West Coast and I was living in Pennsylvania, his blips on my radar were few and far between.
A few years later I was thrilled to see Patterson pop up on NBC’s Last Comic Standing and even more thrilled to see him make it all the way to the finals. Surely this meant we would be treated to a new album soon, correct? 
My wait continued.
I did research - and even got to chat with Patterson as part of my Foot in the Door podcast - and was given a ray of hope when I learned he was working on getting another project released out into the wild. 
I waited patiently. And sometimes not-so-patiently.
Just over a month ago I finally had the great pleasure to sit down with his sophomore CD (Spoiler: No slump here) and I am pleased to report it’s been worth the wait. Even more than worth the wait. 
For those who caught Patterson on LCS or have been fortunate enough to catch him live, you know he takes the stage fully owning the unique delivery that wonderfully accentuates his perfectly-twisted outlook on life. He masters the art of the callback like a seasoned street hustler dealing Three-Card Monte: They (yes, he cleverly juggles more than one) come at you when least expected and because you don’t see them coming, they land with an extra wallop. 
There are so many solid bits on the album it’s difficult to narrow down a starting point...and that’s a great problem to have. You’ll never catch me complaining about a CD that has one great moment after another and I’ve definitely got no gripes about Live from Venice Beach.
Let’s just start with the George Foreman grill, shall we?
It’s a product that’s been around so long I feel there should already be a million jokes about it - and maybe there are - but after listening to Patterson go toe-to-toe with it and deliver a solid knockout, any other contenders have been wiped from my memory. It’s the grilling (no pun intended) that the iconic kitchen appliance has been begging for, yet for some inexplicable reason has always eluded - until now.
It’s a comedian’s job to point out everyday encounters and situations whose commonplace existence in society often masks how ridiculous it is, and Patterson really excels at helping us remove our blinders. Weddings are annoying and the mere concept of a bridesmaid is kind of stupid. A lot birds do have names severely lacking creativity and Brita filters genuinely are the dial-up version of obtaining water in a high-speed world.
And football. Really. Someone really does owe an explanation for the hike because… wow. Yeah. It never struck me as odd before but Patterson is spot on. There must genuinely be a dozen better ways to hand a football to someone that aren’t so - for lack of a better word - creeeeeeeeeepy.
Whether you’re already a tried and true fan of Patterson (like me) or have no idea who he is (like me seven years ago), I’m confident in saying you’ll really enjoy this CD. Considering how long I’ve been waiting for another comedy fix from him, it’s only natural that I went in with high expectations; expectations that were more than exceeded. I don’t know how long it’ll be before we get another project from Lachlan but until that time I rest easy knowing I have Live from Venice Beach to tide me over.

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