Let’s kick the silly season off with a remarkable box from BrandNewNoise. It’s a single-octave metal xylophone on a wooden box with built-in recording, looping, pitching and delay – well, of course it is!
Handmade in Dallas, Texas the Phone-Home Xylophone is the latest in a collection of crazy but awesome little boxes from Richard Upchurch. It has a built-in recording facility and speaker. Hit the red button, play something, press the black button to hear it back. You then have a knob for pitch control and two controls for the delay. There’s nothing elegant about it, just hit the bars with the mallet and twiddle knobs to make spacey noises. It’s a thing of simplistic and yet somehow sophisticated lo-fi genius.
It’s capable of recording up to 30 seconds. There’s an output for speakers or headphones. It’s handmade with Baltic birch and poplar wood with aluminium bars. How can you not love it?
All of his devices follow the same idea of being a simple sound making box but with sampling and looping hidden in there somewhere. There’s shakers, thumb pianos or just a wonderfully earthy and coolly decorated voice recorder – I particularly like the Shaka-Khan. They are laugh-out-loud awesome.
The only stinger is the price. The Phone-Home is $240. There’s a special edition version available from The Ghostly Store which is painted black and has a Ghostly logo on the side. That version goes for $250 but there is an international shipping option.
If you really do have everything and don’t know what to get yourself for Christmas, look no further than the Phone-Home. More information on the BrandNewNoise website.