At the beginning of The Bedroom Philosopher’s (aka Justin Hazelwood) show at Trades Hall, the audience were told that if you found him funny he was a comedian, if you liked his music he was a musician and if you didn’t like either, he was a performance artist. However it felt like he was trying too hard to be all three.
His musical comedy is brilliant and he can easily stand up against the genre’s biggest names. Backed by the Awkwardstra, The Bedroom Philosopher’s Bargain Basement Clarence took the piss out of almost every musical genre out there and was nothing short of hilarious. Northcote (So Hungover) was noticeably absent but he constantly made fun of hipster culture throughout the night, in one of the more enjoyable aspects of the show.
The real highlight however was Trishine, a heartfelt love ballad written from the perspective a drunk bogan. It showed how well he can create realistic characters that everyone can relate to.
There were some problems with the show. The Bedroom Philosopher’s stand-up routines were hit and miss. When he was mocking the hipster culture that he, and most of the audience, are part of, it gave everyone the chance to laugh at themselves. However, when he touched on topics such as Aboriginal rights and racism things got a bit awkward. It’s not these issues shouldn’t be spoken about, in fact they should be brought up more often, but the audience were clearly uncomfortable and weren’t sure if they should be laughing.
There were also moments that didn’t seem to fit. At one point Hazelwood emerged dressed at a cat and pranced around to Chris Isaak’s Wicked Game, which started off funny but dragged on way too long. He also created a routine about computer love which was hard to follow and unnecessary.
Fortunately, for every one of these moments there was a song that followed or Tony Martin’s pre-recorded voice as a commercial radio DJ, which was incredibly accurate and broke up the show nicely.
While some of his most notable songs were absent, The Bedroom Philosopher’s show brought up some interesting ideas and is recommended for anyone who likes their comedy a bit on the quirky side.