Pyramids On Mars – “Battle For Rome” – Single Review

CD Cover (300 dpi)_POST

Well…I mean all I’m saying is you just go ahead and TRY to find me music that sounds more like pyramids on Mars than Pyramids On Mars do! I’m also fully willing to admit I’ve never really heard the sounds of ANY pyramid before…or seen one for that matter…but I’ve got an overactive imagination that tells me this new single “Battle For Rome,” would be exactly what pyramids WOULD sound like if they could make noise or communicate through music. At the very least, definitely the ones on Mars…

Starting off with ominous tones, it’s not long before we end up on a guitar-trip straight out into the stratosphere. Pyramids On Mars have modernized the guitar shredder’s sound and given it a bit of an update here with the “Battle For Rome,” single. Comparable surely to giants like Joe Satriani and Steve Vai; the guitar remains rooted in respect to this instrumental genre in a true display of skill and scales.

Audio Listening Link:

Alright…time to find out who’s responsible for this….

Now you gotta love that! Even though I barely consider myself as having an allegiance to any one country as a true world-citizen…I suppose it still makes me smile to see that an artist comes from Canada when I look it up. To be truthful…and I think you’ll agree Canada (YEP – I’m talking to ALL of you), we just don’t have a lot of this style of skilled-instrumental music in our midst as of late. Here we are now though…finding out that basically ONE MAN from Hamilton, ON – a one Kevin Estrella is in fact responsible for every instrument being played on this single.

That’s impressive to say the very least. With the standout sound, tones and elements coming out of each instrument whether drums, bass or keys…there are no noticeable flaws of any kind here on “Battle For Rome;” so again, to simply say it’s impressive would be like calling Superman Clark Kent to his face. This guy IS Superman…at least the musical version…

And even though each instrument stands out in its own special way, it is of course the guitar-work that is completely thrust into the limelight here. With unbelievable precision, Kevin absolutely nails his main-part here on “Battle For Rome” and leaves zero doubt about the intensity of his skills after a single listening to this song. Around the two-and-a-half minute mark, he rips up and down the fret-board like his fingers want to make sure he’s touched the tips of every section on his guitar. The sound is crystal-clear, the production is fantastic and it all serves to truly highlight the skill he possess above all the rest in his guitar-work.

I’ve always loved this genre of music…it’s one of the first real ‘switches’ I ever had thrown on me that allowed me to open the door to another type of music. I had tickets to the infamous G3 concert here in Vancouver; a line-up stocked full of what was undoubtedly an entire concert full of people Kevin Estrella has been influenced by. The show’s official line-up included Satriani and Vai, and though Eric Johnson was on tour for the U.S.A. portion, in Canada we got Kenny Wayne Shepherd who was kicking all kinds of ass at the time…and as an extreme bonus of sorts, legendary King Crimson-alumni Robert Fripp opened the entire show. Fripp bored me to tears with his ‘Frippertronics’ experiments of playing a single guitar note for about a half hour faced away from the crowd and simply manipulating the ongoing tones and frequencies. Yawn. Legend or not…don’t bore me. Watching Shepherd kill it out there was an awesome switch in the energy…but it was Vai and Satriani that truly changed my life that night.

The reason why…is much like that you’ll find here from the Pyramids On Mars “Battle For Rome” single. Kevin Estrella, much like Vai, much like Satriani, can make this instrument truly communicate and display emotion. That’s NOT a skill that comes along with practice, I don’t care who you are. That comes purely from a connection established between a musician and their instrument that is nearly akin to what we know as ‘true-love;’ like the fairy-tale kind. Only better…and with music.

There’s a real passion that Kevin plays with that only comes along every so often…a real magic; the kind that allows a person to communicate their thoughts, feelings and emotions completely through a musical instrument. Big fan of what he’s put on display here through Pyramids On Mars…I’ll always find myself wishing there was a whole lot more of this kind of music…especially when it’s played this well.

But I suppose that’s just what makes an artist like this so rare and special. There could be a complete saturation with this type of instrumentally-driven music one day…who knows, maybe this will become a dominant style we all love in the future? I have the feeling that even IF this was to happen one day, an artist displaying the true heart, skill and passion that Kevin Estrella does here through his project Pyramids On Mars would STILL stand out miles from the rest and be one of the best investments your ears could make.

Find out more about this guitar-hero at:

Jer@SBS –

Leave a Reply