“I’ve gotten comments like ‘a guitar’s not supposed to do that’, but where’s the rulebook? Just because something is wild doesn’t mean people shouldn’t enjoy it”: Syncatto’s Charlie Robbins is pushing the boundaries of technique beyond belief

Charlie Robbins with his signature Kiesel electric guitar
(Image credit: Press)

While Charlie Robbins, the brains and fingers behind genre-bending instrumental project Syncatto isn’t alone in his adoption of modern guitar techniques, he’s one of a few translating them into his own language. Even if sometimes that’s by accident. 

“It’s funny because a lot of the techniques I've learned over the years I thought I was doing wrong. Then I’d write a riff with it anyway,” Robbins says. “When I write thumping and selective picking riffs, I like to move across a lot of different strings because it’s much easier to outline chords, arpeggios and progressions.

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Phil Weller

A freelance writer with a penchant for music that gets weird, Phil is a regular contributor to Prog, Guitar World, and Total Guitar magazines and is especially keen on shining a light on unknown artists. Outside of the journalism realm, you can find him writing angular riffs in progressive metal band, Prognosis, in which he slings an 8-string Strandberg Boden Original, churning that low string through a variety of tunings. He's also a published author and is currently penning his debut novel which chucks fantasy, mythology and humanity into a great big melting pot.