It’s the kind of record to write about glowingly with fabulous comparisons without actually saying anything about its sound; Pyramids With Nadja is a collaboration between—you guessed it—Pyramids and Nadja, and I can only imagine it was called Pyramids With Nadja by virtue of force. Nadja is only a duo of introverted drone-loving significant others, whereas I’m told there are five people in Pyramids (they’re too hip to have a bio—you just gotta know), who could probably kick Nadja’s ass. Hence, it’s not Nadja With Pyramids.
It should be. Or Pyramids & Nadja & Friends, as there’s about as much sense in calling it that from all the other names involved such as Colin Marston and James Plotkin. But the reason it’s more Nadja than Pyramids—to my ears—is the sense of calculated drone and the mitigated attack to this self-titled side project that smoothes out a lot of the would-be black metal edges that made Pyramids’ debut self-consciously artsy and instead emphasizes their drowning Thom Yorke effect. Also, Nadja’s clear sense of timing helps to alleviate a lot of the more awkward moments in Pyramids’ tighter frameworks.
Notwithstanding the aforementioned drowning, Pyramids With Nadja breathes in a way that allows for a sense of context to all the chaos lurking underneath its material ready to rear its head. And for a listener, sometimes it’s better to search out the chaotic under the tranquil than vice versa. Not always, but I’ll take my Pyramids with a side of Nadja from now on, thanks.