Inophis, a true icon of a guitarist in China, is returning with his new album this month. To celebrate the release of ‘Duality’, why not learn ‘Virus’ on the guitar? To all those music amateurs who like both classical and metal, this one is for you!
Go straight to 3:55 to listen to the track “Virus”.
How can I learn this fairly technical piece?
That depends on each individual. For example, I remember that when I used to work on a piece, it was really important to know it by heart first. I think that that’s a good method for working on a track. But be careful, it is always important to learnt it at a slow tempo.
Is it important to analyse the piece before starting to play?
Of course! A good work method consists of concentrating on the rhythm of the track at first. That allows you not only to understand the various changes in tonality (A minor, B minor, C# minor, F# minor, B minor, C minor), but also to see some of the scales used (Aeolian minor mode, harmonic minor mode, chromatic scales).
What guitar techniques are used in “Virus”?
There are many techniques/effects to be found in the track, such as hammer-ons, pull-offs, slides, artificial harmonics, tapped harmonics, natural harmonics, legato, tapping, sweeping, palm muting, alternate picking, etc…
Are there any key passages that you want to talk to us about?
It is all interesting to work with in my opinion, but if you want to talk about key passages then of course:
From bar 26: a section that uses the G harmonic minor scale on the high E string. I use the open string to peg out the hammer-ons and pull-offs easier. The arpeggios that follow are interesting on a rhythmic level as I play in triplets and then double crotchets. There are also some tapping sequences at the end of this section.
Bar 44: a beautiful tapping section which follows the harmonic progression of the piece. This passage is interesting to work with for beginners, as it is played around one chord (G) and is relatively easy to execute.
From bar 52 : here you need to be more than rigorous, as the suite of arpeggios that comes in here will require a lot of concentration. On one hand there is the execution of sweeping, the change in tonalities, precision, flow-rate, and on the other hand, you have to be able to connect all of these elements. It needs to be worked on slowly and with a metronome!
A final piece of advice: try to do some research yourself into what chord sequence corresponds with each arpeggio that you play. Doing your own research really helps you to progress. Never be satisfied when everything is given to you on a plate :-).
About the musician
Inophis is a French guitarist who is hugely popular in China. A true icon in a country whose guitar culture is ever developing, this eclectic musician is influenced by several styles – rock, metal, classical, jazz, funk and even Celtic music. Whether he is accompanied by his band Merzhin, with whom he has played extensively (Bobital festival, a tour of Romania and in Spain), or playing solo, he loves to enrich his music using his travels.