Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Using Bones in Music: Deer Skull Microphone

This past weekend I had a photo gig at the 49th Electronic SubSouth show, at The Kickstand in Gainesville, FL.

Early in the evening I spotted this deer skull and my brother, Chris, comes up to tell me that this is actually a working mic that one of the musicians that night would be using.

BONELUST - Deer Skull Microphone Top

Later on I met him, Dave Armitage AKA No Limit Cycle.

BONELUST - Dave Armitage AKA No Limit Cycle with His Deer Skull Microphone

Turns out he is into the same kinds of stuff my brother and I are. He works with bats and insects for a living AND collects bones. So naturally I was excited about this and wanted to talk to him. Soon after, he told me a really funny story about how he found the skull involving ants and relieving yourself in the woods...haha

I actually missed Dave using the deer skull mic during his performance, because I had to run across town to the Gainesville Skate Park for another show.

I tried to find video of him using it on YouTube but didn't see any. He's apparently only used it a few times. Dave demonstrated for me though, that he actually puts the snout of the deer skull inside his mouth and vocalizes. The actual microphone is way in back of the skull and full of pennies to make additional noises when the skull is shook.

BONELUST - Deer Skull Microphone Underneath

Here is the underside of the skull where you can see the microphone wiring entering the skull. There is a sort of soft putty sealing it inside.

Dave uses other animals bones in his live performance as well. Here is a video of him using a mic'd bone necklace during a live improvisational performance:

Parts of it REALLY remind me of this Scary Sounds of Horror record I had when I was younger. The same one my family blared out the window on Halloween evening! Awesome.

It is very interesting to see bones being used along with electronic music devices. I'll have to be sure to catch No Limit Cycle another time and get live shots of the deer skull mic in use!

Nice to meet you Dave!

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