Comedian Ricky Gervais tonight performed his first concert as David Brent & Foregone Conclusion, with a backing band including former Razorlight member Andy Burrows.
Brent – best known as former boss and “chilled out entertainer” at Wernham Hogg in BBC sitcom The Office – turned his hand to music in May. Having revived the character for the BBC’s Comic Relief this year, Gervais issued an online series, Learn Guitar With David Brent, which was the character’s first recurring role since The Office concluded in 2003.
With tickets for two Bloomsbury Theatre shows selling out in under a minute and subsequently appearing on a secondary ticketing site for more than £1,000 each, there was a full house at the 500-capacity venue for the one-hour show. The performance began with a 20-minute set by comedian/rapper Doc Brown, after which Ewen MacIntosh – Keith Bishop in The Office, appeared to introduce David Brent & Foregone Conclusion.
The singer and four musicians took to the stage at 8.20pm, with Gervais wearing a waistcoast and a pair of oversized sunglasses. His first words were, “Fashion, innit.” He struck a Mick Jagger-style pose during opening track ‘Ooh La La’. The rocky ‘Life On The Road’ followed, detailing Brent’s lifestyle as a sales rep with couplets such as “Then to Gloucester/I get a Costa”.
The next song was an ode to Brent’s hometown, Slough. “I’m based in Slough – probably the best town in the world,” he said. “Everything in this song is factually accurate, so you should learn summat.” The Suede-style song that followed celebrated the Berkshire town with lines such as “More convenient than a Tesco Express”. The rocky ‘Thank Fuck It’s Friday’ and Bowie-influenced ‘Spaceman Came Down’ followed.
The biggest laughs so far came during the folky ‘Lady Gypsy’, which detailed Brent’s first sexual experience, “by a lakeside south of Didcot”. Gervais then introduced his musical guest – Doc Brown, now in the guise of rapper Dom Johnson. “I have not got a racist bone in my body,” he said. “Chris Martin’s best mate is Jay Z… I’ve got one too: Dom Johnson.” The band then performed the reggae track ‘Equality Street’, country-rock track ‘Lonely Cowboy’ and the calypso-like ‘Ain’t No Trouble’. After exiting the stage, the band returned for an encore of ‘Free Love Freeway’, which first debuted on series one of The Office.
David Brent & Foregone Conclusion play the same venue again on October 23.
David Brent & Foregone Conclusion played:
‘Ooh La La’
‘Life On The Road’
‘Thank Fuck It’s Friday’
‘Spaceman Came Down’
‘Ain’t No Trouble’
‘Free Love Freeway’