DAVE Anderson is a man endearingly obsessed by his age, as his solo work might have inclined us to suspect. But in his new piece for Wildcat, a vast-cast musical that marries every rose-tinted socialist vision of the company to its best score for yonks (played by Sounds of Progress) and a dodgily-expressed post-Dunblane theme, he has created one of the most curiously timeless pieces of late twentieth century theatre in many a moon.

In some ways it is dreadfully seventies. It may begin with a rap, but the bulk of the tunes are in that old bluesy mold, with a dash of reggae for exoticism. It lurches from the Beastie Boys to Randy Newman within the first few minutes and settles into a poignant Marra-esque groove at its highpoints. Rhona Cleland's choreography owes more than a little to the same period.

But we are still firmly in the present, Anderson cast as a crossword-obsessed benign Fagan steering his youthful troupe (''We are not a gang by the way, man'') away from harder drugs than the blaw and Hooch that is their escape from existence in ''a warzone between battles''.

Jon Anderson as the malignant smack-peddler, Mannie, destroys this odd idyll, but has to reckon with our hero Sando (a show-stealing performance from former rockabilly Keith Warwick).

You could drive the starting line-up at the National and several Pullmans through the narrative and some of the political sentiment is so far from correct the light from correctness will take millions of years to reach it, but The Gun is still hugely enjoyable sitting in the stalls. On stage it must be a riot.