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Charted: July 1, 1978


Rating: 3.634 (average of 14 ratings)


Genre: progressive rock lite


Quotable:

”an average bit of material from the Alan Parsons Project” – Mike DeGagne, All Music Guide


Album Tracks:

  1. Voyager (instrumental) [2:24]
  2. What Goes Up [3:31]
  3. The Eagle Will Rise Again [4:20] v: CB
  4. One More River [4:15]
  5. Can't Take It with You [5:06]
  6. In the Lap of the Gods (instrumental) [5:27]
  7. Pyamania [2:45]
  8. Hyper-Gamma-Spaces (instrumental) [4:19]
  9. Shadow of a Lonely Man [5:34]
All tracks written by Alan Parsons and Eric Woolfson.

Vocals: Colin Blunstone (CB), Dean Ford, David Paton, Lenny Zakatek, Jack Harris, and John Miles. Noted on individual songs if known.


Total Running Time: 37:41


Sales:

sales in U.S. only ½ million
sales in U.K. only - estimated --
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. --
sales worldwide - estimated ½ million


Peak:

peak on U.S. Billboard album chart 26
peak on U.K. album chart 49


Singles/Hit Songs:

  • What Goes Up… (9/23/78) - #87 US


Pyramid
Alan Parsons Project
Review:
"The theme of this album deals, as the title suggests, with the remaining wonder of the ancient world” (Thelen) and “man's fascination with superstition and its powers" (DeGagne), specifically “ the ‘pyramid power’ fad that was around in the mid-'70s (the pet rock having proven to be a bust by then) (Thelen). "Lacking the wit and melodic appeal of…I Robot, the Alan Parsons Project's third studio-rock oratorio” (Holden) is "an average bit of material” (DeGagne). "Where I Robot was constructed on a nifty riddle – it's cinematic space rock flaunted the technology its scenario cautioned against – Pyramid uses the mystery of the pyramids as a jumping-off point for some bombastic musings on the vanity of human wishes and the passing of all things" (Holden).

"The instrumental Voyager opens things up, and its provocative style sets the tone for the album's supernatural mood" (DeGagne). The song "builds up the intensity by adding instruments as the piece progresses, then brings the mood back down in order to meld with the first vocal track” (Thelen), the “bright-sounding” (DeGagne), What Goes Up.... “It seems like this one is sung by a pharoah and a skeptic in the time of the building of the pyramids, and questions about whether these would truly be structures to last for the remainder of time (‘If all things must fall / Why build a miracle at all / If all things must pass / Even a pyramid won't last’)" (Thelen).

That song and "The Eagle Will Rise Again, sung by Colin Blunstone" (DeGagne), are two “of the highlights here" (DeGagne). "As the life of the pharoah begins to ebb away, as heard on [the latter] the first image of Egyptian mythology comes forth in the image of the phoenix. The gentleness [and] vocal delivery" (Thelen) “of this track impresses” (Thelen).

"The religious connotations continue on the more uptempo One More River, as the pharoah makes his way towards his soul's final journey towards the river Styx" (Thelen).

Can't Take It With You "shows our hero having second thoughts after discovering he must leave his earthly possessions behind. Too late for him, he eventually will have to board the boat for his jouney on the river Styx" (Thelen). This “lesson-learning [song] teaches that our souls are our most important asset, in typical Parsons-type charm" (DeGagne).

The instrumental In the Lap of the Gods "prepares us for a shift in theme…where the attention shifts from our now-deceased pharoah to a gentleman in 1978 England who is caught up - maybe a little bit too much - in ‘pyramid power.’ The belief was that anything under a pyramid would be positively affected by the pyramid's mystical power" (Thelen).

"This manic belief in the unknown is the basis of” (Thelen) “the anxiety-ridden” (DeGagne) Pyramania, “a cute, peppy number which is enjoyable to listen to – though, as the song lets us know, our new hero's fascination with pyramids is causing unhappiness at home with the wife" (Thelen). This song “enhances the album's concept the best, accompanied by some excitable keyboard playing and a friendly middle" (DeGagne).

"Following another instrumental (Hyper-Gamma-Spaces), our hero finds himself losing everything that mattered to him – in this case, his wife - on Shadow of a Lonely Man. Like the pharoah looking to achieve immortality and lost everything he had accumulated, the modern-day man loses love and everything that mattered in this life, and left him a shell of what he used to be" (Thelen).

"While not a stellar album, Pyramid completes the task of musically explaining its concept. Its short but slightly compelling nature grows after a few listens, but the album…isn't a necessity" (DeGagne).


Review Source(s):


Related DMDB Links:

previous album I, Robot (1977) DMDB page next album: Eve (1979)


Last updated April 4, 2008.