If you thought that 2018 so far is a good year in jazz, then it just became a great one. Formed in 1972, the group went on to record three studio albums in that time Lalibela (1973), King Of Kings (1974) and Birth / Speed / Merging (1976) before disbanding in 1977. Their live shows were energetically explosive at the time, and were known for their dense, percussive and experimental jazz. They reunited in 2012 after increasing demand for their music, but it wasn’t until 2016 when they released their critically acclaimed first album on Strut Records titled We Be All Africans that I really began paying attention to them.
This time around, they come through with an epic new album titled An Angel Fell. The hellish album cover and title suggests anger and discontent with injustice as a central theme to this project. The spiritual, ethereal tone of vibe they produce is again, dense in terms of percussion, with dub influences on track like “Land of Ra” prog-rock on “Warrior Dance” and tribal rhythms on “Tinoge.” The chemistry between all the members who contributed their talents to this project is second to none, with Idris Ackamoor leading the line with his gorgeous tenor saxophone vibes which sets the tone for the album. It is an incredibly dense and beautifully crafted album, and one which will be remembered as one of the best this year.
Idris Ackamoor: Tenor Saxophone, Keytar, Lead Vocals
Sandra Poindexter: Violins, Lead Vocals
David Molina: Guitar, Effect pedals, Vocals
Skyler Stover: Double Bass, Vocals
Bradie Speller: Congas, Handsonic, Vocals
Johann Polzer: Drums
Album cover – top right
Artwork by Lewis Heriz.
Listen to Idris Ackamoor and the Pyramids’ An Angel Fell below via Bandcamp, and make sure you support the music! Released vi Strut Records.