Guitarist replaces his strings with dental floss – and it sounds surprisingly good
You might want to swap out your Ernie Balls for some Oral-Bs after watching this video.
You might remember Bernth Brodträger, the Austrian YouTube guitar sensation who, last week, called out guitarists in the metal community for their obsession with tuning lower and lower in the pursuit of out-heavying one another.
That video might have led you to believe Bernth is somewhat of a purist – one who discards forward-thinking guitar techniques and advocates for a more traditional approach. But you’d be wrong.
In fact, a large section of his channel – which boasts nearly 900,000 subscribers at the time of writing – is dedicated to his weird and wacky sonic explorations, which routinely find him modifying, and sometimes even destroying his guitars in the name of experimentation.
In the past year, for example, Bernth made waves by writing and recording a song using an acoustic guitar filled with water, and set the YouTube guitar community alight by playing a guitar with actual lit fireworks attached.
But in his latest video, the guitarist has opted to modify his guitar in a slightly less damaging way: by replacing his guitar strings with dental floss.
Now, when we saw the video title, we had no doubt it would work; if you pull a length of string tight enough between two fixed points you’ll be able to hear a discernible pitch. But we weren’t quite prepared for how intriguing a fully equipped dental floss guitar sounds.
In a brand-new original composition – titled Floss, of course – Bernth showcases the capabilities of his dental floss guitar, offering a series of riffs with metal-inspired note choices, but with a Middle Eastern flavour thanks to the pairing of the Phrygian dominant scale with the lighter, more twangy tone of the dental floss compared to normal strings.
For the track’s guitar solo, Bernth swaps out the top three floss strings with some regular acoustic guitar strings, highlighting how good the dental floss sounds as a rhythm-guitar accompaniment in a mix.
One commenter raises a very important point: “The real question is how waxed and unwaxed floss compares in tone.” We simply can’t rest until we know the answer to this question, so Bernth, please do the honours…