Comedy review: Tom Ward: Love Machine

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Edinburgh Festival Fringe: Returning to his preoccupations of sex, sound effects and his strict religious upbringing, Tom Ward has the charismatic standing and many of the right ingredients for a great Edinburgh show, but he’s still struggling to find quite the right balance.

Just the Tonic at The Tron (Venue 51)

***

While his parents embraced fundamentalist Christianity, he’s a born-again clubber, music fan and latterly singleton, revelling in the idiosyncratic behaviour he can indulge in now he’s alone.

Almost gentlemanly in his viewing of porn, Ward has thought long and hard about sex, from his favourite sample of Prince’s moans to the age he’ll be before he truly masters intercourse, his likening of impending orgasm to galloping horses evocatively presented.

Alluding to his ex, Jane, the one who got away, he also memorably depicts a serial killer neighbour and takes phone calls from his sister, who initiated him into the world once he left hardcore Christianity.

His troubled relationship with his mother meanwhile, forms the bedrock of his hour, Ward’s efforts to reconnect with her going further than anticipated.

Initially slow, with mixed success for his initial crowd work, he nevertheless artfully draws you into his story without being explicit, drip-feeding you just enough information to keep you invested.

Until 27 August.