Mask-wearing experimental metallers Imperial Triumphant have released a version of Rush's Jacob's Ladder that's both extremely creepy and substantially epic

Imperial Triumphant group portrait
(Image credit: Alex Krauss)

New York-based experimental metal band Imperial Triumphant have released an unlikely cover version of Rush's 1980 classic Jacob's Ladder. The mysterious trio, who formed in 2005 and are famed for their deeply sinister masks as much as for their cacophonous, black-metal-meets-jazz stylings, have the talk to match the lofty musical ambition.  

"Ascension towards a higher place through twelve ancient steps of Jacob's Ladder," they intone. "Rush's influence is undoubtedly far and wide in so much heavy music, and although we consider our music quite different from theirs, a strong thread holds it all together. 

"As big fans of their giant body of work, we wanted to include a song in our cover series to pay tribute to this great unique band. We also wanted the cover image to reflect the legendary Permanent Waves artwork."

The release is part of an ongoing series of unexpected cover versions: three months ago, they delivered a powerful version of Radiohead's Paranoid Android, adding new levels of torment and despair to Thom York's tale of broken humanity.  

Imperial Triumphant tour the US this month - dates below. 

Imperial Triumphant 2023 tour dates

Sep 10: Reading Reverb, PA*
Sep 15: Pittsburgh State AE, PA*
Sep 19: St. Louis The Hawthorne, MO*
Sep 20: Denver Globe Hall, CO
Sep 21: Albuquerque Sister, NM
Sep 24: San Diego The Observatory North Par, CA*
Sep 26: Reno Virginia Street Brewhouse, NV*
Sep 27: Santa Cruz The Catalyst, CA*
Sep 28: Sacramento Ace of Spades, CA*
Sep 30: Anaheim The Parish, CA
Oct 01: Phoenix The Van Buren, AZ*
Nov 28: Boston Royale, MA^
Nov 29: New York City Webster Hall, NY^

* with Behemoth, Midnight and Twin Temple
^ with Baroness

Fraser Lewry

Online Editor at Louder/Classic Rock magazine since 2014. 38 years in music industry, online for 25. Also bylines for: Metal Hammer, Prog Magazine, The Word Magazine, The Guardian, The New Statesman, Saga, Music365. Former Head of Music at Xfm Radio, A&R at Fiction Records, early blogger, ex-roadie, published author. Once appeared in a Cure video dressed as a cowboy, and thinks any situation can be improved by the introduction of cats. Favourite Serbian trumpeter: Dejan Petrović.