Afro Futuristic Dreams | Idris Ackamoor & The Pyramids Drop New Album

The recording is the Pyramids’ first new release since the acclaimed Shaman! in 2020 and coincides with the 50th anniversary of the band’s debut album - the cult classic Lalibela. They will be playing a full European tour in Autumn 2023.

by GRIOT - Published on 28/09/2023
Photo: Melanie Marsman. COURTESY

An epic, sprawling new work exploring the future, the past and the urgent reality of the present. Recorded between San Francisco and London and brought together by the genius of Malcolm Catto at his analogue Quatermass Studio, the new recording represents another bold step in Ackamoor’s ever-evolving journey in jazz, adding full, intricate scores including string sections and choral elements to the Pyramids’ trademark
spiritual Afro-jazz sound.

Driven by the core Pyramids members Ackamoor (sax, keytar, organ), Margaux Simmons (flute), Sandra Poindexter (violin) and Bobby Cobb (guitar), tracks range from hard-hitting commentaries about police brutality (Police Dem) to celebrations of the ancestors and departed loved ones (Requiem For The Ancestors, Re-Memory) and hazy cosmic journeys, including the album’s title track and the sparkling, experimental closer, Nice It Up.

“This album has been many years in the making,” explains Ackamoor. “Back in late 2020, I set out to compose the first in a series of scores to take The Pyramids sound into brave new territory. All of the tracks involve issues that the core band is passionate about and the recording was a complex process involving many musicians and vocalists across two different time zones.”  “The compositions of Afro Futuristic Dreams pay homage to the present Afrofuturism movement that has embraced the science-fiction writers Octavia Butler and Samuel R. Delany, the musician Sun Ra and my own work with The Pyramids. Afro Futuristic Dreams chronicles the historic times we be a-livin’, the past we be feelin’ and the future the planet is headin’ in. It is a testament to survival, unity and honesty to face our collective destiny.”

On July 12 they Idris Ackamoor & the Pyramids unveiled the single Thank You God–a 13-minute epic voyaging between the band’s signature spiritual jazz sound in addition to funk, afrobeat and choral music. Featuring soaring, harmonized vocalizations steeped in gratitude from Sandra Poindexter, Daria Nile and Queen Califia, they sing “We are one family spinning through the galaxy. Sailing on spaceship Earth, sharing collective destiny”. Driving a message of peace and unity, underpinned by Idris’s unique saxophone and ever-fresh arrangements.

“I designed this song as spiritual jazz for the 21st Century, with a nod to Pharoah Sanders’ The Creator Has A Master Plan and Tauhid and John Coltrane’s ‘A Love Supreme‘. The composition pays homage to all Deities known, unknown and within our souls giving thanks for the sunlight, the moonlight and the guiding light as we spin through the galaxy sharing our collective destiny,”  Idris Ackamoor said.


2. THANK YOU GOD 13.19
3. POLICE DEM 9.01
6. RE – MEMORY 5.33
9. NICE IT UP 7.34

Stream ‘Afro Futuristic Dreams’.

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