Guitarist Kevin Estrella’s project Pyramids On Mars has a new album being released on December 21, 2019, entitled “Edge of the Black”. The full length offers up an aural palette of intense instrumental progressive shredding rock that’s emotional, provocative and 4-dimensional.
Teaming up with MusicLegends.ca, Pyramids On Mars is premiering the next single ‘The Ambassador’ here.
Estrella explains the track in further detail:
“The idea for The Ambassador was actually sparked from the guitar it was played on. It is played on a Signature ‘Aurora’ Guitar. Built by the Signature Guitar Company sometime around 1987. Alex Lifeson of Rush made the guitar famous playing it exclusively for the albums “Hold Your Fire” and “Show of Hands”. Alex designed the guitar, along with Russ Heinl. What makes it unique is the balance of Basswood (from a rare variety found only in Quebec) and has the three active single-coil pickups, giving the guitar a very unique: clear, bright yet warm distinctive sound. No guitar sounds like it. It was meant to be the ultimate Superstrat. It’s almost like an acoustic guitar on hyperdrive. Only 500 Signatures were ever made. My Signature Aurora is quite unique. The original owner purchased it from Steve’s Music Store in Toronto back in the late eighties. It was a floor model. It doesn’t even have a serial number. It is quite the collector’s item.
The Ambassador was written by-that-guitar. I didn’t write the song, the Signature guitar did.Speaking of Rush, the song is heavily influenced by Rush’s early works from the eighties. The concert video Show of Hands comes to mind was a huge influence on the Edge of the Black sound, particularly in the songs The Ambassador and Arcturian Rain.
The theme of the song is about an Ambassador who has been selected from Earth, chosen to be a spokesperson for the people of Earth. Scientists found a way to open a portal to another galaxy and he was chosen to go through it and hopefully meet some Extraterrestrial nation on the other side. Some other interesting things come to mind in the song. The guitar solo is doing some interesting combinations of two-note per string sweep picking, combined with string skipping arpeggios a-la Paul Gilbert style. The solo ends in a nice diatonic extension arpeggio legato phrasing. These and other techniques I teach on my online instructional guitar lessons https://pyramidsonmarsguitarlessons.pivotshare.com/“
Following Pyramids On Mars’ two previous albums, “Edge of the Black” was written, composed and performed solely by Kevin Estrella who cites influences from musical greats including J.S Bach and Antonio Vivaldi along with today’s guitar virtuosos Yngwie Malmsteen and Joe Satriani. “Edge of the Black” pays homage to these artists while still maintaining Estrella’s own creative flair. Estrella shares his thoughts on the album:
“On Edge of The Black, I wanted to put emphasis on songwriting and telling a story. The emphasis is not just on the lead guitar melody, but on the band as a whole. Harmonic variations on repeating themes are strongly utilized; like rhyming phrases in spoken language that allows easier accurate retelling of the original story. This idea of repeating music phrases/themes so the audience can easily recall it and hum it all the way home.”
“Edge of The Black” pre-order available on Bandcamp.
‘F-22 Raptor’ here.
‘Song of Light’ here.
‘Nacht Waffen’ here.
1. Blood Moon 5:42
2. Nacht Waffen 6:56
3. Song of Light 5:44
4. F-22 Raptor 5:53
5. The Ambassador 4:57
6. Mercury Magnetar 4:58
7. Arcturian Rain 4:38
8. Time to Believe 4:40
9. Arioso Lullaby 4:39
10. Whale Song 4:28
Album Length: 52:40