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A review of...
Rope and Shoeing by Irma Vep
Irma Vep's latest release is a live album recorded at the Hope & Ruin, Brighton back in January 2017. It's being released as a limited lathe cut LP during the month of February (you'll also be able to download it if lathe's aren't your bag). Anyone who heard last year's superb No Handshake Blues will be aware of Edwin Stevens' ability to shift gears between deeply intense and quietly contemplative with seeming ease. And here he starts off in much the same fashion. Choosing to open with a seven minute monster called "Moaner" before toning things down for the majority of a stunningly fragile and introspective performance.
Completely solo, and armed with only and electric guitar this is, I suppose, what would be classed as a career spanning set as the tracks are cherry picked from a broad range of albums and singles, going right back to "There's Nothing Wrong With Feeling Wrong" from 2012. Of these heartbreak ballads, it's perhaps "Your Tears Are The Sweetest Sauce" which provides the highlight, a cruelly humorous, dose of Nashville storytelling done in a very British manner.
If you're not familiar with Irma Vep and want to take a punt this could work as a nice little introduction. For any fan of Irma Vep, this is an essential collection which showcases him at his raw and broken best.
Rope And Shoeing will be available to pre-order as a special, one-time edition lathe cut LP at endless-records.bandcamp.com for the month of February 2018, and download only after that.