Jess & The Ancient Ones: Jess & The Ancient Ones

The Devil’s Blood decamp to Finland.

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While one normally wouldn’t think that your average mild-mannered prog fan would go a bundle on the whole occult side of things, both the recent appeal and the success of bands such as The Devil’s Blood and Blood Ceremony suggests there might be some mileage in such endeavours. Add to that list Finland’s Jess And The Ancient Ones then. Two months ago they were an unknown quantity to us here at Prog, until the inclusion of Ghost Riders on the cover CD for Prog 26 alerted our ears.

Calling themselves progressive occult heavy rock and citing influences as diverse as Mercyful Fate, ABBA and Roky Erickson, it would be easy to merely label the band a new Devil’s Blood, but there’s a different kind of depth to their style, which also brings with it a dash of Kansas and early Heart to the likes of the 15-minute plus Sulfur Giants and the catchily rocking Prayer For Death And Fire.

The septet might boast three guitarists, but the swathes of Hammond organ from the mysteriously titled Abraham lend Jess and her merry troupe a far more progressive edge. It’ll be fascinating to see how the live shows pan out – a case of it’ll be all rite on the night perhaps?