Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 8.5/10
We are all animals in our own farmyard; we might not like thinking about the fate of the horse, why the pigs are lording it over us or at what point the farmer was allowed to take retirement, yet still we go on, still we place our faith in the feed and the illusion. It takes art to give life meaning, everything else can just be the sound of sharpening knives and it takes real vitality and animation to alert all considered that these could be the Last Days At The Farm.
Ian Jeffs’ fierce appraisal of life is such that the music contained in his E.P. Last Days At The Farm is one of outpouring emotion, of reinvigorated desire and yet even then, deep and well hidden by the past and the nosy snout of the individual cunning fox, there is so much more to uncover, so much reaction waiting in the wings, it is if the clues are in the chicken coop but the poultry are holding the fox to ransom and not prepared to let him go without a fight.
Last Days At The Farm is also a product of beauty, it installs a sense of knowledge within the listener, a sense of perspective to understand another person’s viewpoint and in each detail offered, the sense of appreciation grows, the fox’s destruction upon the soul of the farmer is explained and the cycle of life is restored; last days upon the heath land and the straw filled yard but this set of songs will undoubtedly lead Ian Jeffs onto pastures new.
In the songs Talking To MH, Warm Bloodied, Shadow Play and Pouring Steam, the experiences of his time bleed through and make the tracks arguably more deeply personal, even on a subconscious level, than the listener might have expected; a collection of songs that row downstream, the raging torrent easily and with craft avoided but with keen observation noting for others the whirlpools and the strife ahead.
A short snappy but eagerly devoured E.P., Last Days At The Farm is a tremendous listen and one to fill your heart with.
Ian D. Hall