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Reviewed by Stu Edwards

Jake Stokes: Before We’re All Dead EP

Reviewed by Stu Edwards

Jake Stokes: Before We’re All Dead EP

With a studio and a live album already released, Brit-born Wellington blues-rock guitarist/vocalist Jake Stokes returns with this five-track EP. Stokes’ production knowledge is evident from the first song, with a spacious and shimmering mix presenting the package with class. Three of the tracks are original compositions, with the two covers well chosen and interpreted. Classifieds builds from a clean pop ballad to an aggressive message of rage, complete with guitar solo, while retaining a sparse approach to the instrumental arrangement. Liza Jane is an energised Vince Gill cover that manages to bring something new to the table on an innovative guitar track. So Long had me questioning why the song was so familiar, until I realised it is Stokes’ ability to write great melodies that resonated. Lee Hazlewood’s famous song These Boots Are Made For Walkin’ is given an upbeat treatment that avoids potential clichés. A deft guitarist, his fluid solos only add to the songs as a whole, and ‘Before We’re All Dead’ proves another solid instalment in Jake Stokes’ discography.