A most useful, useless gift

In addition to the merino wool underpants (comfy) and the England cricket one day top (in preparation for the summer Ashes clashes), I was lucky enough to receive what at first seemed a rather odd gift for my birthday.

As I say, at first it seemed odd, but now I’m warming to the idea.

fm3 buddha machine mark 2Firstly, it’s not an outdoor gadget… as such. Looking at the picture, you might think it’s a cheap transistor radio (fair point) but actually it’s a buddha machine, and it’s the second incarnation of this ‘piece of aural art’.

It plays meditative loops but in a distinctly low-fi way which gives the impression that the loops are being beamed from space (!?)… or by Long Wave at least.

There are nine loops which play until you switch the unit off, or the two AA batteries run out. A button changes the loop and you can adjust the volume and pitch too.

‘What a load of cobblers,’ I hear you shout. You might be right, but I’m a fan of ambient music and soundscapes… artists like Biosphere. This little grey box provides a similar aural experience. The repetitive nature of loops is both soothing and haunting.

So why should I mention it on this blog? Ever been trying to get to sleep on a campsite when a fellow in the tent next door is doing an impression of an elephant seal with his snoring?

This may be the ideal solution… just plug you headphones in and relax.

The only drawback is that it’s not too light, and it seems unlikely that a tough, splashproof outdoors version will be hitting the shops soon.

Anyway, you can find out more on the buddha machine here.

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