Steve Byrne is the writer and lead of the TBS sitcom Sullivan & Son. You might not want to base your decision on whether or not to get his stand-up comedy MP3 album Champion on that fact alone. While Byrne opens with some nice, safe material about the many questions asked of you at the cash when you buy something, his set quickly moves towards much more adult and controversial material. The last third of the album is solid relationship and men vs women material that is certainly not as safe as it sounds.
Byrne's material about race relations in the U.S walks a very fine line between nasty and offensive. One of the reasons the comic gets away with it is because it is very funny but there is also the fact he is Asian-American that allows him to push the enveloppe a bit further. I am not convinced just saying America is no longer a racist nation because it elected Obama is enough to diffuse some of the material's controversy. A more astute comic would have understood the inherent and barely veiled racism behind many GOP comments and the audience those play to.
Champion is overall a solid mp3 album but its scope in terms of tone leaves the listener feeling off-kilter.
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