Ever since Nuno Bettencourt drew a massive line in the sand with the fretboard theatrics of Extreme’s comeback single Rise, new tracks from the band have once again become headline news in guitar land. Their latest single, Other Side Of The Rainbow, however, features a solo that the guitarist ranks as his favorite of all the new songs.
“It’s a groove we’ve never done acoustically,” says Bettencourt, in the accompanying press statement. “It’s got my favourite guitar solo… it’s an up-tempo, moving song.”
Indeed, it seems the airy, romantic track – which feels somewhat like a lost ’90s radio hit – presented the guitarist with a challenge, given his desire to carry the shred torch on the band’s forthcoming album, Six.
As Nuno puts it: “How do you play a blistering solo, [while] making it feel like a rainbow?”
It is, indeed, a question for the ages – one asked by many players of stature. In other words, how can you melt faces, while also melting hearts?
Of course, Nuno gives it a damn good go here, switching from a 12-string acoustic to his Tele-style Washburn Nele signature guitar for the purposes of blistering your facial regions – channeling a trilling and a rich melody into some hectic lead histrionics.
It’s all backed by a promo clip that sees Extreme providing the soundtrack to an uncharacteristically wholesome teenage love story, complete with all the classic ‘90s tropes: argumentative parents, unfeasible teen ownership of a vintage automobile and a band playing electric guitars with no visible power source.
Anyone who keeps tabs on Nuno’s headgear as closely as we do (wait, you don't?) will also be pleased to see an outing for his excellent cowboy hat.
We’re not quite sure if it affects his playing in any way, but research leads us to believe it is somewhere between the open-crown and Amish styles – should you wish to acquire one and channel some Bettencourt juju.
Bassist Pat Badger, meanwhile, keeps it straight down the line with a classic cattleman hat, which we imagine has superior rhythmic properties.
Six is due to land next week (June 9) and …Rainbow is therefore likely the last pre-release single we’ll hear from the record. We’ve already had Rise, of course, and that was followed by the double-release that was Banshee and #Rebel, all of which have had standout six-string moments.