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Roopam Garg’s hypnotic sweeping harmonics are like no guitar technique you’ve heard before

Berklee alumnus Roopam Garg treats the electric guitar quite unlike any contemporary guitarist you care to name - it’s his divining rod to conjure wells of ethereal soundscapes that have more in common with ASMR than traditional melodic approaches.

Garg demonstrates his idiosyncratic process in Empty Phenomena Rolling On, the first track from new project DARK.

Empty Phenomena plays host to Garg’s dextrous sweeping harmonic technique, delivered via his Abasi Larada eight-string, lending the track an undercurrent that manages to be both frenetic and relaxed.

The clip above showcases the trippy technique in action, while the full track is available now on streaming platforms.

“The music of Dark is less about harmonic content and more about experience.” Garg explains. “It serves as a lens in which to look at the world through - to change one’s relationship with the internal and external.”

Fans of ambient guitar music will already know Garg from his previous sonic experimentations in The Surrealist, best captured in twin eight-string opus Arcadia.

“Ambient music is more liberating as a composer,” Garg told GW earlier this year.

“There are no restrictions from rigid structures or instrumentation. You’re literally able to paint whatever you want on a blank canvas – anything goes. I’m allowed to explore unorthodox sounds on the guitar that wouldn’t have a home anywhere else.”

DARK intends to release a track a month, with a full album on the cards for 2021. Head over to DARK’s official website for more info.

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Mike is Editor-in-Chief of GuitarWorld.com, in addition to being an offset fiend and recovering pedal addict. He has a master's degree in journalism, and has spent the past decade writing and editing for guitar publications including MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitarist, as well as the best part of 20 years performing in bands of variable genre (and quality). In his free time, you'll find him making progressive instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe.