Guitarist/Songwriter Tuomas Karhunen has announced that he has left Jess and the Ancient Ones. This news came as a huge shock to me but I was very happy to learn that it was an amicable split. Here is what Tuomas had to say:
I am no longer a part of Jess and the Ancient Ones. There is no drama or anything like that, and I wish JATAO all the best from the depths of my heart. I’ve started a new ‘dark Americano’ band with my sister Mari, who is the lead singer of Luciferian Light Orchestra (she’s also done some guest appearances in Therion lately). New songs coming soon via The Voodoo Project!
THE VOODOO PROJECT is the working title for a brand-new ‘dark Americano’ group, formed by Tuomas Karhunen (ex-Jess and the Ancient Ones, Forgotten Horror, Deathchain, True Black Dawn). To create the first line-up, Tuomas summoned the Voodoo Priestess Mari Karhunen (Therion, Luciferian Light Orchestra) as the lead singer to finally work musically together his sister.
Tuomas has already written songs for the band, almost enough for a full-length, and the duo is now working with the songs in order to self-release some advance / demo material during the spring of 2016. The final band name will be announced soon, together with the first songs.
When asked about his feelings of moving forward without his long time band, Karhunen said:
“Certain melancholy is always connected with leaving something behind; it’s life. On the other hand, I’m glad that this happened and I’m absolutely sure that the change will be an improvement to all parties.”
No official word has been released from the Jess and the Ancient Ones camp as to what their plans are for moving forward but I will be sure to keep everyone posted. For now, I’d like to wish nothing but great success and happiness to both Tuomas and Jess and the Ancient Ones. Like in so many other break up cases, we just may be getting two great, unique sets of music from two bands so if that’s the case, it’s a win/win situation.