Sean Cullen is a multi-talented Canadian stand-up comic and entertainer. This former Corky and The Juice Pigs has been on every possible comedy related show in Canada, penned the best 6Teen episodes, and is a regular talent on CBC television and radio. Live! his independent release stand-up comedy CD Sean Cullen Live! features some 73 minutes of Sean Cullen doing what he does best with Dylan Goodhue on guitar and will please and satisfy his fans.
Unfortunately, Cullen has never quite tickled my funny bone on a regular basis. I have always been annoyed with Sean Cullen's inability to hold the microphone close enough to his mouth so people could hear everything he says. For some reason, he even seems to have a tendency to bring the microphone closer to his mouth when he speaks loudly and hold it as far as he can when he lowers his voice. This is quite evident on his independent release comedy CD Sean Cullen Live and the recording engineer and producer do not manage to solve this problem.
Cullen also has the, to me, irritating habit of overemphasizing the punchline and repeating it in as many different metaphorical ways as possible and I can't help thinking pick one and stick with it. Then again, this is part of his style and you either like or you don't.
Sean Cullen Live features quite a few funny songs often bookended by some stand-up comedy bits. Of course, his classic Bond Villains routine is on this comedy CD. This is a very good take on James Bond movies and the rules on being the bad guy in a 007 epic. This is the kind of routine that more than has its place on a classic Canadian comedy compilation CD though its recording will not be taken from this particular CD as, once again, the mic seems to resist following Cullen around as he moves on stage. There are a couple of extensions to the Bond bit with a comedic bit on Sean Connery's ability with dialect and a pretty good funny song track on Bond themes and the people who never performed one such as Neil Young and Ethel Merman.
Sean Cullen Live also includes a salute of sorts to Van Morrison and Meat Loaf (though his name is misspelled on the CD liner. Being a Meat Loaf fan I enjoyed the bit though, once again, Cullen's tendency to speak in a soft tone and then raise his voice here again takes away from the listening pleasure.
Other tracks I enjoyed or tried to enjoy included Chinese Country, Love Triangle and Country Music and the seemingly improvised Earthquake Lootin' The bit on Rob Zombie however falls flat.
Sean Cullen Life is a treat for his many fans though it might not make a lot of converts.