Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Pyramids - Penetration, The Best Of The Pyramidsdotdotdot
artworkThe Pyramids were one of the handful of surf bands that had national hits. This CD reissues their only album plus bonus tracks. It was long overdue on CD. It's really great to hear all the tracks from this classic album again. Sundazed added their post album singles ("Contact" c/w "Pressure" and "Midnight Run" c/w "Custom Caravan") and film score tracks ("Record Run" & "Bikini Beach"). The album master used for the compilation was the London Records version rather than the original Best Records version. Among the errors this leads to is the assumption that "Road Runnah" and "Out Of Limits" were Pyramids tracks. They were not. "Out Of Limits" was an alternate take from the Mar-Ketts sessions, and "Road Runnah" was recorded by the Road Runners (c/w "Quasimoto" as a single). They were added to the album by London. This is a totally worthwhile CD. It is also nicely priced.
Picks: Penetration, Road Runnah, Pyramid Stomp, Sticks And Skins, Paul, Out Of Limits, Contact, Pressure, Pyramid Stomp, Midnight Run, Record Run, Bikini Drag

Track by Track Review

Penetration dotdotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

One of a handful of nationally successful surf single, this track has been covered more than "Miserlou," and in more varieties of rock styles. If you don't own this track, you have entered the surf idiom yet. This is one of the essential classics. The production is unusual and masterful, and the melody is simple and enduring. It spawned hundreds of covers, and is still quite infectious.

Road Runnah dotdotdotdot
Hot Rod Surf (Instrumental)

The single A-side (B-side was "Quasimoto"), this track ended up on the London Records release of the Pyramids' album. It does not appear on the original Best Records release, and bears no similarity in playing or style to the Pyramids. OK, so that's not a slam, just a clarification. This track rules! It's hot, "Pipeline" like, and fiery. It may be a bit obscure, but it's a great track!

Pyramid Stomp dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The obligatory self-named theme... most bands had one then... "Dick Dale Stomp," "Surfaris Stomp," etc. A much more rough and tumble track than "Penetration." Cool!

Sticks And Skins dotdotdot
Drum Solo Surf (Instrumental)

As the sixties wound down, the self indulgent drum solo died too. In the early sixties, it was still in it's heyday, with the Surfaris, Adrian & the Sunsets, Dick Dale, Sandy Nelson, and others providing examples. The massive guitar chord opener is quite powerful, and the drumming is imaginative.

Paul dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Paul who? The track is a solid surf instro, though mostly jam inspired.

Out Of Limits dotdotdot
sci-fi Surf (Instrumental)

Like the Road Runners track, when London reissued the LP, they added an alternate take from the Mar-Ketts' sessions. Great track.

Contact dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is the B side of "Pressure," and was not on their album. As with the flip side, it is a very cool rhythmic and infectious track.

Pressure dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

"Pressure" was one of the Pyramids follow-up singles to "Penetration," and did not appear on their album. Totally infectious, a collector's must have, and a surf fan's delight.

Pyramid Stomp dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

The obligatory self-named theme... most bands had one then... "Dick Dale Stomp," "Surfaris Stomp," etc. A much more rough and tumble track than "Penetration." Cool!

Midnight Run dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Another follow up single, and a cover of the Gary Usher / Super Stocks / Richie Podolor tune. It's among the best versions out there.

Record Run dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Another obscuro, and more in their main style vein. Cool track.

Bikini Drag dotdotdot
Soundtrack Surf (Instrumental)

From one of those dreadful American International beach flicks. The song is cool, the movie sucked. It's an infectious track with a tuff beat and playful melody.