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Jess & The Ancient Ones: Jess & The Ancient Ones

Another band on the occult trail, the overwhelming impact of Jess & the Ancient Ones debut doesn't become apparent until after the first few listens. This is a slow-burner, an album that is slowly seductive, an album that spreads its mighty wings wide only for them to deliberately close in and around you where you shall remain, enraptured by its mystical majesty. The compositions are superbly crafted with the dynamics shifting across the entire sonic spectrum of the driving rhythms of classic metal, grandiose 70s-inspired riffs, and melodies that soar into the ever-deepening atmospheres. The up-tempo classic rock riffs and lead breaks of 'Prayer For Death And Fire' and 'Twilight Witchcraft' are juxtaposed with the darkly enchanting mid-tempo and almost filmic twelve minute tracks, 'Sulfur Giants' and 'Come Crimson Death'. 'Ghost Riders' rhythmic and rumbling 12/8 bass line spirals over the course of the seven and a half minute track from a blues shuffle into a heavily rhythmic and driving track. Yet it's the jazz feel of the piano-led 'The Devil (In G Minor)' that stands out as simply remarkable.

The elaborately structured tracks – seven in total, ranging from four to over twelve minutes – are all compelling, hypnotic even, in their understated grandeur. While Fast Jake's dirty bass grooves along Yussuf's tasty drumming, the tracks are enhanced by Abraham's ornate organ work, his macabre/carnival-esque lines weaving their horror between the fine guitar work of Thomas Corpse, Thomas Fiend and Von Stroh. And Jess's dulcet and mesmeric tones are haunting, her melodies superb - particularly her Clare Torry-like wordless phrasing - and combined with her lyrics, the album's occult splendour lingers long after the album has finished. Like Ghost, The Devil's Blood and Blood Ceremony, Jess and the Ancient Ones will sit perfectly alongside those 70s-inspired bands for a very long time. And anyway, the artwork is reason enough to get this on vinyl…

Track Listing:

  1. Prayer For Death And Fire
  2. Twilight Witchcraft
  3. Sulfur Giants
  4. Ghost Riders
  5. 13th Breath Of The Zodiac
  6. The Devil (In G Minor)
  7. Come Crimson Death

Added: September 1st 2012
Reviewer: Jason Guest
Related Link: Jess & the Ancient Ones Offical Website
Hits: 2225
Language: english

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