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metal talk
28th August 2012

nordic thunder

American Justin Howard, alias Nordic Thunder, has been crowned World Champion air guitar player in the northern Finnish city of Oulu.

Howard gave a barn-storming performance that included sliding across the stage bare-legged and took the title by just 0.2 points from compatriot Matt Burns.

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After scooping the title and a handmade electric guitar, Howard said: "I feel amazing, I feel loved, I feel like crying and laughing and hugging."

Runner-up Burns, known as Airistotle, scored 34.4 points from the five judges and Netherlands' Theun 'Tremelo Theun' de Jong came third with 34.3.

The 17th Air Guitar World Championships were held in Rotuaari Square in the city and included performances by Finnish pop acts. It has been held there since 1996.

Howard was US Champion air guitarist last year and won silver in the 2011 World Championship.

Competitors have to win their national championships to earn their chance in the final, although some are able to win a place through a Dark Horses qualifier.

Entrants send a 60-second clip of their performance and judges select the best ones.


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