Review of Shockheaded Peter, 5 out of 5 Stars
The Guardian, Apr 13 2002, Rupert Smith
Thomas has replaced Martyn Jacques and the Tiger Lillies as the musical workhorse of the show, relating grisly tales of infant mortality as surrealist nightmares unfold around him. Jacques was never going to be easy to follow: his glacial falsetto and retarded expressions were the soul of the show - and he wrote all the songs. Thomas, however, has the gravitas to pull it off, and his husky vibrato gives the show a folksier, less operatic feel. Billed as the "Elephant Terrible, with the voice of an elk and the legs of a King Charles sideboard", Thomas adds immeasurably to the freak-show appeal. During Johnny Head-in-Air, he loses the plot, throwing off his hat and sharing a tender moment with his accordion before stomping around the stage in an infantile strop.
Review of Shockheaded Peter
Time Out, 4/17/2, Maddy Costa
Thomas' voice defied convention, rumbling and swooping as trumpeter Andy Diagram and guitarist Keith Moliné employ a series of effects to warp and enhance each melody... He [Thomas] is a huge presence, dominating the toy box set and contrasting comically with wiry Julian Bleach, with whom Thomas appears to be curiously furious throughout. There are some terrifyingly volatile moments, particularly during Johnny Head-In-Air when it seems Thomas will actually attack Bleach. This crackling tension, Thomas' dark intonations and the Two Pale Boys' creepy creaks and chords render the show far scarier than in previous productions.
Time Out, 12/5/01, Ross Fortune
David Thomas endures. Like few others. Pere Ubu, of course, remain undimmed by the years. More, in fact. Their stature positively grows with time's passing. Unusual that. Thomas, meanwhile, does his own thing. As always, only different. And still he stretches and grows. His prolificacy, too, in recent years stands testament to a humble talent raging. A series of albums that beguile and confound. And regular live shows-- always worth catching-- that range in sweep from South Bank exposition to smaller affairs like this. He is comfortable with all. Holding court and sway. Twist and throb. Spook and thrill. That voice, a quivering tremble engaged in squall. And his presence, the hulking blether and shake. Not forgetting the others. Here, his Two Pale Boys. All linked like mesh. As outlined on Thomas's 1997 'Monster' box: "Keith plays midi-guitar and Andy plays a Trumpet Machine Thing so each of them is generating two or more instrument voices at any one point. Don't worry. You are not being cheated. Guaranteed live, in the moment, generated by actual, though pale, human beings." Believe.