You have to wonder just how they do it. Less than a year since their last release ‘Ey Up! Let’s Go!’ and following a long run of local shows and festival outings, the Bar-Steward Sons of Val Doonican are back with their unique blend of humour interwoven into superb covers.
As we’ve come to expect, the Doonicans have not shied away from reinterpreting classics ranging from the Bee Gees and Abba, to The Clash, and The Commodores. No one is safe. A quick glance at the tracklisting; ‘Pint Fever’, ‘Portaloo’, ‘I Fought The Lawn’ and ‘Queasy’, should be enough to tell you there’s laughs aplenty here, regardless of your feelings towards the originals.
But the laughs are only half the story, and would quickly fall flat if it wasn’t for the wonderful musicianship – recreating such well-known hits with apparent ease, complete with extra helpings of ukulele and accordion.
The only criticism? You could argue the ideas on offer here are no different from the band’s previous efforts – just another dozen songs given the Doonicans treatment. But it’s tracks such as ‘The Lady In Greggs’ and ‘Stalking On Facebook’ that challenge this. The Chris De Burgh and Katrina & The Waves hits have been transformed from the shallowest of shallow pop songs into comedy masterpieces: that not only tickle the funny bone, but also capture the zeitgeist of contemporary Britain.
And like all good comedians, the Doonicans have perfected the art of knowing when to quit before the joke starts to wear thin. With no shortage of laughter from start to finish, there’s clearly plenty of mileage still left in this routine.