German guitarist Manuel Gardner Fernandes’ playing is in a league of its own.
His insane, vertigo-inducing compositions, loaded with bell-like tapped harmonics and eye-wateringly quick finger work, are so impressive, in fact, that he was accused of faking his electric guitar playing in 2019.
The accusations came after a selection of content creators attempted to shine a light on alleged six-string trickery occurring in online guitar videos. Unfortunately for Fernandes, he was placed right in the firing line.
Setting the record straight, the guitarist confirmed that he does occasionally edit and pre-record his videos – as is the entitlement of any online content creator in 2022 – to ensure the music is the “best quality and to add an extra two percent of perfection to it.”
But he asserted that not a single one of his videos had ever been sped up.
And on a positive note, the controversy helped get Fernandes in front of a wave of new viewers, many of whom ultimately became fans.
Like his contemporaries, Fernandes selects poppier, more electronic backdrops upon which to lay his out-of-this-world lines.
He also fronts progressive-metal band, Unprocessed, blending genres with the likes of the pop-djent single “Candyland,” and the pop-inspired cut “Portrait.”
Fernandes makes light work of rapid muted strums for percussive flair and octave-hopping harmonic chimes.
“I started playing metal when I was a kid and started playing downstrokes back then,” he said of his signature style in 2020. “After that, I started combining Latin styles, and at some point I wanted to integrate dead sounds and notes.
“I found a way to play it the fastest and tightest way possible.”
This 2020 rendition of the instrumental “Right Hand King” is case in point. In this mind-blowing performance, Fernandes throws down his trademark percussive muting and lightning-quick tapped slides over a hip-hop beat.
Browse the Manuel Gardner Fernandes catalog here.
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