I Want to Play My Eigenharp (if I can work out how to)
Friday, October 9th, 2009
I absolutely love the look of this, yet it pains me that I won’t ever get to play the magical Eigenharp (unless I can find a spare £4000 or so).
I spotted a report on the BBC website yesterday, which provided me with the first tantalising glimpse of this amazing new musical instrument. Designed by some crazy computer geeks in Devon and effectively a cross between an electric keyboard, synthesiser and a bassoon, the Eigenharp looks like something straight out of the Star Wars universe and sounds….well, fantastic.
Although some cynics may look at the video above and just think “well, they’re obviously miming along to a backing track. Hang on, that sounds like a Moby song! How dare they try and claim the credit for their ridiculous-looking instruments…”, think again. That’s really three guys performing the song for real.
However, I have absolutely no idea how these people are actually managing to make that sound. Even this BBC report doesn’t really shed any light on the matter, although it has just made me want one more.
Apparently the Eigenharp is expected to be the instrument of choice among up-and-coming experimental prog-rock bands in the coming years. Even goth musicians are asking for them, although this is probably to give their angsty emo-laced songs a bit of extra, much-needed bite. Had this astonishing piece of machinery been created 40 years ago, I highly suspect acts like Rick Wakeman and Pink Floyd would have creamed themselves to get their hands on it for a psychadelic ballad or two.
Of course, we’ll have to see whether bands over the next few years actually start using this piece of equipment or not – but, come on. Look at it! How could any self-respecting musician not want to play around on something as mind-bendingly mental as this?
From a PR point of view, I envy whoever gets the job of selling this to the media. Especially if they end up getting a free one for their troubles….