Shakin' Pyramids

Shakin' Pyramids

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Scotland's Shakin' Pyramids never caught on like the Stray Cats, but they were a similar neo-rockabilly outfit with real commercial potential. They recorded two studio albums -- Skin 'Em Up (1981) and Celts & Cobras (1982) -- that traced the group's evolution from hot rockabilly to slick, densely produced roots rock. Like the Stray Cats and Robert Gordon, the Shakin' Pyramids did not merely attempt to re-create the sound of '50s rockabilly, but occasionally incorporated elements of contemporary pop and rock. Shakin' Pyramids is a distillation of the group's two albums created for release in America, with five songs each from the two albums (nothing is included from a 1981 EP they recorded with skiffle star Lonnie Donegan). The cuts from Skin 'Em Up are superior, with a driving, mostly acoustic rockabilly trio sound. Shakin' Pyramids concentrates on the band's originals, but the covers -- Bobby Helms' "Tennessee Rock & Roll" and Webb Pierce's "Teenage Boogie" -- stand out as two of the best songs on the album.