Jess and the Ancient Ones – Castaneda 10″ – Svart Records

In conformity with the cosmic trips.


After a debut album and some Ep’s, the ensemble called JATAO (counting with the talented vocalist Jess) is the embodiment of a recent phenomenon which can be called “neo-psychedelic music”.

It’s impossible to not compare them with Seremonia or Jex Thoth, their sound drinking from the waters of 1960’s music of Jefferson Airplane and Coven.

As Ray Davies would say in 1964, the voice of this woman really got me.

Unfortunately this 10” EP counts with only two short songs, and a somewhat upbeat tempo at the first track Castaneda starts with inverted guitars and when the songs starts de facto the trippy keyboards take over the whole thing. But Jess steals the scene, she is the show. Her voice is really hypnotic.

The second track is more occult rock, (I know labels suck, occult rock being the bands that follow the steps of the satanic psychedelic band Coven from US and their legendary (and rare) album Witchcraft Destroys Minds And Reaps Souls (1969)). Named As to be With Him, the song is a trip to the past with bland guitars (for the conventional heavy metal fan, maybe it won’t appeal) and what it seems to be an Hammond in the backdrop resembling somewhat Deep Purple and Uriah Heep.

The only complain here is that the guitars are very subtle and bland. Where are the trippy solos? Where is the Iron Butterfly’s In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida factor with extended askew soloing? Okay I know about the limitations of a 10” EP, but they should invest more in this raw side of music.

This EP will certainly inspire me to hear more about them. Both tracks are catchy as hell, so if you’re an orphan of the good music made in the past, here’s what you need to hear.

Castaneda 10″ is out now on Svart Records 

(Daniel “Roderick” Death)

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