The 22nd annual Air Guitar World Championships have just been concluded in Finland, with an old favourite returning to defend his title.
American air guitarist Oslo Matt Burns – otherwise known as Aristotle – thrilled the judges to record a top score of 35.4 and take out the comp. Aussie Alexander ‘The Jinja Assassin’ Roberts came in equal second on 34.6 points, drawing with German Patrick Culek.
Despite three silver and three bronze medals across the years, Australia is still yet to take home the air guitar gold since the tournament’s inception.
The competition, which operates under the moniker of ‘Make Air, Not War’, started out as a joke decades ago and as a means of boosting the profile of Oulu, in central Finland. Years later however the competition is taken extremely seriously, both by competitors and air guitar fans.
Aristotle’s winning song was a heavy metal version of that karaoke classic, ‘I Will Survive’. All in all there were 15 competitors in the final, coming from 11 countries including Pakistan, Taiwan and South Korea, among others.
Despite a number of other festivals trying to take Finland’s crown as an air guitar destination, the World Championships have retained their prestige to showcase the crème de la crème of air guitar skill.
You can watch a two hour stream of the event here. You can also listen to a couple of interviews, although being able to speak Finnish is a definite plus.