Every now and then, a comedy album comes along that is so entertaining, so enthralling, that it pulls you in like an old-timey radio program; nothing else exists. Your focus is entirely on every word the comedian says. Enter comedian Tyler Boeh – a native of Portland, OR who spent time honing is craft in Boston before moving to Los Angeles – and his debut, Carpool Companion (released through Uproar! Entertainment), and you’ve got a solid, concentrated 47 minutes of pure comedic pleasure.
Boeh has been performing stand-up for about 10 years, and has cited that one needs 10,000 hours to master any craft, whether that’s comedy or playing an instrument or carpentry. His time spent practicing and fine-tuning his act truly comes across in his debut effort, as his high-energy, ultra-clever wit never wanes. While Boeh may touch on subjects that common in stand-up (international travel, drug use, sex), it’s his ability to pull an entirely unique punch line from the situation that will leave you in stitches.
“I don’t know if you guys have all traveled internationally,” Boeh begins, “but a lot of countries will name their major airports after a famous person from their country. So as we are flying into the Venice International Marco Polo Airport, I did not feel that confident about that landing coming in.”
Early on Carpool Companion, the comic is able to connect with his audience through what is not so much self-deprecating humor, but an incredibly self-aware assessment of who he was growing up– a scrawny kid with a lazy eye: “Some people think I’m making it up for the show, they’ll come up to me after the show and say, ‘Do you really have a lazy eye? Can you make your eyes turn in?’ I don’t know if you heard me, it’s lazy. I can’t get it to do anything.’”
Adding to the album’s overall entertainment factor is Boeh’s double-life as a human beat box. He says he loves sounds (and admits he’s curious as to how lovemaking would sound with a woman who had a tracheotomy), and masterfully uses his beat-boxing skills to interject hilarious accompaniments to jokes about techno church music and interracial sex.
With his clean-cut looks and boy-next-door image, it’s not a huge surprise that Boeh’s act is relatively clean– which is always admirable, when a comedian can actually make it work. And there’s even a positivity to Boeh’s humor, even when he’s talking about homeless guys who beg for money on highway off-ramps (check out the title track for a full explanation). Carpool Companion is, without a doubt, one of the best comedy albums this year, and whether you know it yet or not, Boeh is a comedic force.