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Hilariously horrifying synth screams at you with 25 sets of disembodied teeth

VOC-25 - A conceptual vocal synthesizer

From a Furby opera to the world’s largest analog synthesizer to an instrument that’s designed to be played in zero gravity, Digital Trends is always ready to take you on a trip to the weird side of the music store when it comes to the projects we cover. It’s into this strange netherworld that a new project from Swedish designer Love Hultén enters the picture.

In his latest creation, Hultén has built VOC-25, a nightmarish (yet undeniably intriguing) synthetic choir in the form of a collection of screaming false teeth that are built into what looks like a chunky, retro-style beige monitor, attached to a MIDI keyboard. It resembles something that belongs in an old episode of The Twilight Zone, perhaps containing the trapped, endlessly screaming souls of… well, you get the idea. It’s kind of mad.

“I got the idea when watching a YouTube clip from inventor Simone Giertz,” Hultén told Digital Trends, referring to the self-proclaimed queen of crappy robots, whose work we’ve covered before. “She built a similar ‘wall of teeth,’ but only using mechanical sounds. I wanted to take it one step further and make it more functional, but also giving the concept my own artistic touch.”

That “artistic touch” resulted in this chattering monstrosity (in the very best possible sense). VOC-25 includes 25 sets of hinged teeth in all, with each set representing a unique voice on the keyboard. “Vocal audio samples are fed into the main console via USB, and these samples are then played via keyboard,” Hultén said. “The mechanical teeth are controlled by solenoids. In order to direct these, keyboard signals are converted to DC current via control boards. The setup can be used [on its own] with its built-in speakers, but it also outputs mono in the back.”

Unfortunately, Hultén said there are no plans to mass-produce the VOC-25, meaning that you’ll be spared the sight of millions of singing teeth computers wherever you go. “No, this is a one-off piece, for show only,” he said. “It’s very complex, very time consuming, and parts are not cheap. It would make [for] quite the price tag.”

That’s the kind of news that makes you want to scream. Or get your hands on a tooth-studded machine that can do the screaming for you!

Luke Dormehl
I'm a UK-based tech writer covering Cool Tech at Digital Trends. I've also written for Fast Company, Wired, the Guardian…
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