“I’ve never had a lover die on me before”
Adams’ masterstroke is to filter his story through a noir crime genre that never takes itself too seriously. So in Ciarán Owens’ hands, Anthony’s investigations take on a faintly hilarious quality (“with a swish of my raincoat, I left the police station”, “I am myself not yet 33”) even though the appearance of a second body twists the plot into darker, more murderous territory. It also provides much needed occasional lightness as Owens’ spares us nothing of the underlying anguish of this addict.
Steinberg’s direction takes Tumulus to further interesting places in a number of ways. A refusal to use sex to sell the production (either in the publicity or in the production itself) is hugely refreshing and focuses the attention away from the salacious. And having co-stars Ian Hallard and Tom Rhys Harries be foley artists as well as playing all the supporting parts adds to the atmosphere in the creation of an increasingly unnerving soundscape, keeping audiences on their toes as much as the twisting mystery that unfolds. Recommended.