Human Pyramids – Planet Shhh! (2014)

Human Pyramids: a delicious blend of Sigur Ros, The Only Ones and twatting the Aussies in the Ashes.

Their album, Planet Shhh! is huge, vitamin D drenched music that falls between pop and post-rock. A more suitable description might be to say the music falls between “penguins” and “cocktails”.

If all this seems overbearingly whimsical, then it fits; dry, dusty comparisons don’t fit music so joyously technicolour. Vivid images play across your mind in a dizzying whirl.

Attempting to be more clinical, Human Pyramids is not so much a band as a stonking ensemble under the auspices of Mr Paul Russell. Here you’ll find cello, violin, accordion, tuba, trumpet, French horn…

Here’s the front over of Planet Shhh! It’s the perfect album art for music that could be drawn with waterproof crayons. In fact, the album should really come with free glue, glitter and sequins.

pyramids 2

Let’s look at some of the highlights:

As soon as ‘Tall Tales’ starts you are blinded with opulence. Strings, accordion and trumpets usher you into this three-dimensional sound world of bliss. A barrage of the happiest post-rock you’ll ever hear.

‘The Bubble’ is possibly the highpoint of the album. A jingle jangle tune that sporadically explodes into an ascending rocket cluster of euphoria. Before things get a bit too formulaic, there is a surprisingly display of swerving, careering guitars.

Click to listen.

‘Relapse’ manages to salvage the ukulele from its recent adoption by train station loitering stalkers. Xylophones, stomping drums and high voltage guitar. The video features a ball pit, the best comparison for Human Pyramids you’ll ever need. If you ever feel sad that as an adult you are no longer able to jump in a ball pit, stick this album on instead.

Click to watch the video for ‘Relapse’

‘Skimming Stones’ has a country-ish lilt reminiscent of whichever song The Fall ripped off for ‘Janet, Johnny & James’ yet this soon gives way to a waterfall of sugary textures. There is also a hint of electro-pop rhythm, like a theme tune to a crap 80s game show.

‘Singing Sands’ steroid pumped lullaby with a cavalcade of drums and huge guitars. Blasts of brass blare.

‘A Town Called Malaise’, apart from being a neat pun, conjures the kind of excitement that only an episode of Thunderbirds could generate.

A peacock’s tail of an album that over-flows with joy. It’s time to invent new superlatives.


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