10 great air guitar moments

26th Sep 2012 | 13:13

10 great air guitar moments
Radiohead
Creep

Some songs are ear-worms, some have profound lyrics, and some have points where it is physically impossible not to break out the air-axe and rock out like you're headlining Wembley Stadium. Here for your headbanging pleasure are some of the greatest air guitar moments ever...

Radiohead - Creep

Grannies. Toddlers. Amazon tribespeople. There’s literally nobody on the planet who doesn’t don a phantom Telecaster and do the pre-chorus crunches at 0:57 and 2:00.

Not bad, given that Jonny Greenwood had included them as an act of self-sabotage. “That’s the sound of Jonny trying to f*** the song up,” explains Ed O’Brien. “He tried spoiling it... and it made the song.”

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10 great air guitar moments
Aerosmith
Walk This Way

You’ll try to fight it, but that stuttering riff contains a subliminal message that forces your mouth into a leery pout, your crotch to buck and your hand to thrash an imaginary Les Paul. In your mind, you’re the lost Toxic Twin. To everyone else, you look like a bank clerk swatting a wasp in rush-hour traffic.

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10 great air guitar moments
The Knack
My Sharona

Trickier than it sounds to actually play, The Knack’s staccato über-riff is the perfect choice for the bachelor with the cricket bat, the full-length mirror and the drawn curtains. Just thinking about it is making TG bob our heads like demented pigeons.

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10 great air guitar moments
Sex Pistols
God Save The Queen

Gawd bless her and all that, but Steve Jones’ palace-storming powerchord intro riff fills us with so much anti-establishment venom that we have to channel it into air guitar to stop us from assaulting a Beefeater. 35 years later, it’s still the sound of anarchy spilling bedlam’s pint.

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10 great air guitar moments
The Who
Pinball Wizard

Specifically, that deathless moment at 0:25, when Pete Townshend’s flamenco-ish acoustic strumathon is interrupted by that hairy-chested electric stab. Disclaimer: do not attempt the windmill in enclosed spaces or china shops.

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10 great air guitar moments
The Darkness
I Believe In A Thing Called Love

Be honest: who among us hasn’t shoehorned themselves into a leotard, star-jumped off the washing machine and mimed that thrilling light- speed pull-off section at the 3:00 mark? Yeah, you have. We were watching you through the letterbox.

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10 great air guitar moments
Blur
Song 2

Even Graham Coxon admitting in TG227 that it’s mainly the bass “going through one of those little plastic Marshall amps” can’t ruin our scissor- kicking theatrics when that brittle ascending riff kicks in. The delusion is so complete that we even stamp on an imaginary RAT pedal at 0:15.

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10 great air guitar moments
Feeder
Buck Rogers

As invigorating as a bucket of water over a sleeping drunk, the moment at 0:25 when Grant Nicholas’s guitar almost literally explodes would make your great uncle Reginald flail at thin air. And he’s been dead for five years.

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10 great air guitar moments
Metallica
Battery

Once the Mexican restaurant intro is out of the way and the galloping section drops at 1:10, Battery takes a battering, with each of us baring our teeth à la Hetfield, growling the lyrics, and down- picking furiously like a dog with a case of fleas. You look ridiculous, of course. But it feels so damn good.

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10 great air guitar moments
Led Zeppelin
Stairway To Heaven

“No Stairway!” screamed the semi- ironic signs in 70s guitar shops, and it’s a cry echoed by your partner when that glorious first phrase of Page’s fruity solo kicks in on the Homebase Tannoy and you start plank-spanking like you’re onstage at Madison Square Garden. Great to hear and play. Arguably even better to mime.

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