If you have ever wanted Plini and Rabea Massaad to co-write a track together and then take off into some forests out by Helsinki for the promo video, today is your lucky day.
The dynamic duo, summoned to the studio by Neural DSP while they were both visiting the amp modelling, multi-effects and guitar plugins company’s HQ, actually did write a song, a tour-de-force of instrumental prog guitar, and were duly sent out into some atmospheric Finnish locales for the video.
The track is titled GIVING 6, and you can check it out above. Massaad is on his Chapman signature guitar – a modernised T-style, loaded with his signature Bare Knuckle Silo electric guitar pickups – while Plini is on his signature Strandberg, a 21st-century headless build that still feels ahead of its time even in this digitally disrupted age.
Film school classicists who love nothing better than the union of form and content will enjoy both Massaad and Plini ending up on a bridge during the bridge. Prog guitar nerds will enjoy listening to the electric guitar being taken out of its comfort zone and pushed into a rhythmic bounce and a some hypnotic hyper-picked melodies that offer no room for slop.
Upon the launch of his Neural DSP Archetype: Rabea signature plugin suite – which, lest we forget, has a real, actual synthesizer onboard – Massaad told MusicRadar that Neural’s CMO Dan Davies played impresario in this instance and got the pair to collaborate while they were both in Finland.
“Plini was up for it too,” said Massaad. “I had an old demo and he was doing a bunch of shows so didn't have the time to to get home and write something quick. I had a handful of ideas that I’d started and not really progressed, and I found one that I thought fit. I sent it over and he was getting into it. We just finished it off together in Finland, and shot the video.”
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The video is cool, but Massaad asks us not to look too closely at the guitar playing. Oftentimes, this is the starting point for any of us daring or foolhardy enough to attempt a transcription, but GIVING 6 had only just come together, and neither of them had time to the track down pat.
“We were learning how to mime the parts as they were setting up the cameras,” said Massaad. “It was funny because there's so many moments where we were glad that it's a wide shot where you can't exactly see the frets and playing! We didn't have the time with everything else happening to know that song off by heart. But it was great fun. And I think the tune is fun.
“It’s interesting actually hearing the two of us on a song. Because there are kind of similar sounds, and I'd never really considered that before but it's nice. And it we fit together on the song, which I think is really cool.”