Only a few days away now until the grand finale! Tension is building. James over at alloutguitar.com has posted some honourable mentions!! I know if I was doing this list it would be many pages long. Some great talent and great players, some great songs and great techniques!
What can we say about Matt? A great multi- instrumentalist and Internet legend already, Matt was only a 100 or so votes behind Gustavo Guerra in the Peoples Choice and is clearly an exceptional talent who was shortlisted by several of the judges. It was felt in the final analysis, though, that his particular entry didn’t show his undoubted skills in the best possible light… However we all think that he is a genuine talent – and with his massive army of supporters is almost guaranteed a place next time!
This Mexican guitarist won plaudits for his great sense of touch, phrasing and tone – and this coupled with great chops meant that Cesar was always going to be in the running. His choice of entry was picked up on, as it was felt by many that he didn’t show himself in his best possible light, but remember he followed the true spirit of the competition by using one of the backing tracks, as Ed Box comments: “…the other of my track interpretations, and a favorite of mine! Awesome diminished lick at the end, which I will probably steal!” Next time Cesar we expect you to be there!
One of the very first entrants, Celta was a front runner with his excellent blend of prog and metal. A great guitarist and compositionally very strong, we all hope that he will be back in August!
What a player! Great rock/metal chops and a great, well constructed track: ultimately it was felt that he was a little too close to Mr Vai, but nevertheless gained many votes from the judges and in the end just missed out… As Ed Box comments: “This song is cool and quite evil. I wouldn’t want to mess with the Lavaman!”
A great sense of swing and fun in his track captured the judges attention: this Finnish virtuoso possesses world class chops, great timing and simply put in a totally professional performance! Like a freaked out Steve Morse with his groovy chromatic runs, Matthias figured in at least a couple of Judges Top 12, but just missed out. Next Time…
:A textural and interesting entry – but many felt that there was not quite enough ‘real deal’ playing to warrant a Top 12 place: it was almost too atmospheric and production focused to work in the Live Final. But with great instances of superb Shawn Lane/Eric Johnsonesque playing, Mark must enter again!
A simply phenomenal guitarist – this colossus from the West Country is a truly scary player, who covers many technical styles at will and was shortlisted by several judges including Owen Edwards. Edward Box was also impressed: “Conrad is a top fusion/rock player and I particularly enjoyed his arpeggio burn out! Expect great things from this man!“
Silvio earned enough points to be invited to the final but couldn’t make the trip. Silvio was deemed an example of a true Guitar monster along the lines of Shawn Lane, Todd Duane and similar: unbelievable technique and genuinely different, and with his effortless command of the instrument this guys time in the guitar limelight is surely guaranteed…
Dimi was the highest scorer of all with the judges, but due to personal reasons couldn’t make the final. Quite simply the most melodic and epic playing of the contest: Dimi was the front-runner from the beginning and we all hope he can make it next April…
Richard is a highly respected master guitarist and several judges had him rated very highly indeed. This track had elements of Greg Howe’s early Shred Blues album brought bang up to date, with state of the Art advanced rock and fusion chops – Richard is very much the complete package. Could quite easily have been top 12!
A perfect example of melodic rock guitar with world class chops and superb, tasty, phrasing: in the end Oziel’s track didn’t get enough points – despite being first choice for at least a couple of the judges!
A great off the wall performance from this jovial guitar nutter, his brand of neo-classical guitar mayhem won many friends and again was very close to making the grade. We all felt that he would be supremely entertaining live – so we hope to see Ricardo again! We leave the final words to Edward Box: “I absolutely love this guy and my mates and I have had a great time watching this and his other youtube appearances but Ricardo is more than just a comedian, he has great technique and was one of the most exciting entrants. Lollipops rule!”