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Monty Python Live at Drury Lane is a 1974 album by Monty Python and their second Live Album. It was recorded at Drury Lane Theatre in London and features mostly sketches and songs from Monty Python's Flying Circus. Most of it are exact renditions of the TV versions, but here and there the Pythons offer some slight variations in delivery, extra lines, Audience Participation or Improv. Other sketches are material from their student stageshows at Cambridge and Oxford and At Last the 1948 Show.

Tracklist

Side One

  1. "Introduction/Llamas"
  2. "Gumby Flower Arranging"
  3. "Secret Service"
  4. "Wrestling"
  5. "Communist Quiz"
  6. "How Sweet To Be An Idiot"
  7. "Albatross"/"The Colonel"
  8. "Nudge, Nudge"/"Cocktail Bar"
  9. "Travel Agent"

Side Two

  1. "Spot The Brain Cell"
  2. "Bruces"
  3. "Argument"
  4. "I've Got Two Legs"
  5. "Four Yorkshiremen"
  6. "Election Special"
  7. "Lumberjack Song"
  8. "Dead Parrot"
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Personnel

Tropes:

  • The Alcoholic: "The Philosopher's Song" features various historically important philosophers all depicted as alcoholics.
  • Album Filler: Several sketches use visual imagery that makes listeners who weren't there wonder what the hell is going on stage?
  • Asian Speekee Engrish: Mao speaks in this voice when he says "Sing Little Birdie" in the "World Forum" sketch.
  • Audience Participation: During the songs the audience is invited to sing along.
  • Bilingual Bonus: "Llamas" has lines in Spanish, with Idle translating them directly into English. During "Secret Service" some French and German is spoken.
  • Blowing a Raspberry: "Liberty Bell" ends with someone blowing a raspberry.
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  • Broken Record: "Secret Service" has Cleese trying to make Idle laugh, by asking the same question over and over again: "Why do you want to join the secret service?", not giving Idle a chance to get a word in.
  • Chewing the Scenery: Cleese delights in hamming his delivery up.
  • Corpsing: Cleese enjoyed doing this to his fellow actors on stage. It happens during "Election Special" and "Secret Service".
  • Covers Always Lie: Despite being announced as a Monty Python not all the material here is from their series. Some sketches are from the time they were college students performing, others from the radio show ‘’At Last the 1948 Show” where Cleese and Chapman were regulars: “Cocktail Bar”. Neil Innes, former member of The Bonzo Dog Band, also performs the Bonzo song “How Sweet To Be Idiot”.
  • Design Student's Orgasm: The cover image was designed by Terry Gilliam.
  • Epic Fail: In the "Election Night Special", Kevin Phillips-Bong of the Slightly Silly Party doesn't receive a single vote, or Pathetic Defeat.
  • Gratuitous Spanish: "Llamas" is sang and performed in Spanish. Idle provides the translation that in the original TV sketch appeared in subtitles.
  • Heteronormative Crusader: "Bruces" features a group of Australian philosophy students who are absolutely against having "poofters" in their society.
  • Hurricane of Euphemisms: The "Dead Parrot" sketch has Cleese name all kinds of synonyms for death.
  • Improv: Some lines are improvised or exaggarated in their delivery.
  • Improvised Platform: Described in the Lumberjack scene: "I always wanted... to be a lumberjack! Leaping from tree to tree, as they float down the mighty rivers of British Columbia!"
  • Land Downunder: "Bruces" features a bunch of stereotypical Australians with ditto accents. They are also all obsessed with guzzling down beer, as the sound of beer cans being opened is heard all throughout the sketch.
  • Live Album: This is Monty Python's second concert album.
  • Motor Mouth: Mr. Smoketoomuch can't shut up and just keeps on ranting.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: "I've Got Two Legs", a Captain Obvious song about legs, nevertheless very catchy.
  • Overly Long Name:
    Election Official: Malcolm Peter Brian Telescope Adrian Umbrella Stand Jasper Wednesday (pops mouth twice) Stoatgobbler John Raw Vegetable (sound of horse whinnying) Arthur Norman Michael (blows squeaker) Featherstone Smith (blows whistle) Northgot Edwards Harris (fires pistol, which goes 'whoop') Mason Chuffchuffchuff Frampton Jones Fruitbat Gilbert (sings) 'We'll keep a welcome in the' (three shots, stops singing) Williams If I Could Walk That Way Jenkin (squeaker) Tiger-drawers Pratt Thompson (sings) 'Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head' Darcy Carter (horn) Pussycat 'Don't Sleep In The Subway' Barton Mannering (hoot, 'whoop') Smithnote .
  • Precision F-Strike:
    • During “Dead Parrot” Cleese uses more vulgar language than in the TV version:
    He fucking snuffed it!
    • "Albatross"
    Of course you don't get fuckin' wafers with it, you cocksucker!
    • "Cocktail Bar"
    We'd like to apologize for that last sketch. We're sorry. We really are sorry. We're honestly so fuckin' sorry
  • Product Placement: Eric Idle out of nowhere takes out a piece of “Breakaway” chocolate during the “Nudge Nudge” sketch and says: “Uggh! Breakaway”!, which gets a huge roar of laughter from the audience, since Idle used to advertise this product. The line was edited out on most other compilations and also cost Idle his exclusive deal with the company.
  • Racist Grandma: "Spot The Brain Cell" has the old lady mutter: "I don't like darkies." To which the TV presenter adds: "Who doesn't?"
  • Recognition Failure: Eric Idle provides the introduction and pretends to recognize celebrities in the audience, whom he can't name or identify.
  • Reference Overdosed: The "Election Night Special" sketch is even more funny if you know something about how the way BBC TV broadcasts news about elections.
  • Repurposed Pop Song: "How Sweet To Be An Idiot" is performed by Neil Innes (The Bonzo Dog Band) and is from his 1973 debut album.
  • Repurposed Pop Song: Some sketches are from their college years and At Last the 1948 Show.
  • Self-Titled Album: "Monty Python Live At Drury Lane".
  • Shout-Out:
    • "Gumby Flower Arranging" is described being presented from Vanessa Redgrave University. note 
    • "Wrestling" is presented from "The Uri Geller Institute of advanced spoon bending".
    • "Bruce's Song" namedrops various philosophers: Immanuel Kant, Martin Heidegger, David Hume, Artur Schopenhauer, G.W.F. Hegel, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Karl Wilhelm Friedrich and/or August Wilhelm Schlegel, Friedrich Nietzsche, Socrates, John Stuart Mill, Plato, Aristotle, Thomas Hobbes and René Descartes.
    • "World Forum/Communist Phonecall" has Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin, Che Guevara and Mao being quizzed.
    • "Cocktail Bar" has Cleese read an article in the newspaper: "Nixon had an asshole transplant", to which Palin adds: "All the other assholes rejected him."
    • "Spot the Brain Cell" has the quiz master ask the old lady "Which great opponent of Cartesian dualism resists the reduction of psychological phenomena to a physical state and insists there is no point of contact between the extended and the unextended?" She says she doesn't know the answer to that, but after thinking it through she gives the correct answer out of nowhere: Henri Bergson, despite adding "That was lucky. I never even heard of him."
    • "Election Special" quotes from "Climb Ev'ry Mountain" from The Sound of Music.
  • The Something Song: “Argument Song”, “Bruce’s Song” and “Idiot Song”.
  • Standard Snippet: "Liberty Bell" by John Philip Sousa, the theme song of Monty Python's Flying Circus is heard near the end.
  • Straight Man: The colonel (Graham Chapman) ask Terry Jones and Idle which one of them is the straight man? Then the "Nudge Nudge" sketch sets in.
  • Surprisingly Gentle Song: "How Sweet To Be An Idiot", despite being a comedic song actually sounds quite touching.
  • Time Marches On:
    • In "World Forum/Communist Phonecall" the presenter says that the question "When did Coventry City F.C. win the FA Cup?" was a trick question, because this soccer club has never won this prize. In 1987 Coventry did win this championship, thus ruining the joke.
    • "Cocktail Bar" makes reference to Nixon, who was still US President in 1974.
  • Too Dumb to Live: In the "Election Night Sketch", the unofficial "Very-Silly Candidate" gets two votes (presumably from people who would've voted for the official Silly Party Candidate), thus allowing the Sensible Party to take the constituency by a single vote. Also, the Slightly-Silly candidate gets zero votes, indicating that he didn't even vote for himself.
  • When I Was Your Age...: The "Four Yorkshiremen" sketch has four rich people brag about whose youth was the most poor and miserable, which goes to absurd lengths.

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