Review: The Horne Section, York Barbican, June 13

THE Horne Section is a joyous salve to the miserable drizzle outside, their charming brand of musical comedy sure to lift spirits and make you feel like it really is summer after all. Not even Thursday’s power- cut could stop them (admittedly, it wasn’t going to stop them from either performing or going to the pub).

Their latest show plays like a Best Of for the die-hard Horne Section fans, and an impeccable introduction to those new fans who’ve found their way to the group via their podcast or the success of Taskmaster, frontman Alex Horne’s TV creation.

Despite Horne’s ringleader dynamic, bossing his musicians around with only the slightest bit of sadistic glee, each member of the Section gets their chance to shine with solo numbers.

The introduction runner is a brilliant way to break up the segments of the show, and always delivers on laughs. It’s dumb, sure, but it makes you smile: the simplicity and effectiveness of the band’s jokes often makes them feel like the platonic ideal of dad humour.

That said, there’s a cheeky edge to the band that no eye-rolling teen can defend against, as evidenced by the families in the audience having an absolute hoot. The band’s brand of humour is inclusive in the same way a dog falling down is universally funny, and there’s heart here too that elevates the show to prove it not only funny, but touching.

It’s an evening that’s infused with genuine musical talent, supremely silly punch lines and plenty of audience interaction that will have you laughing in such a pure and lovely way that the sound “heehee!” actually escapes your lips. Not to be missed.

Louise Jones