History

The Aztec Death Whistle and the sound of a thousand ghouls they make

For decades, archaeologists thought the ancient Aztec Death Whistles were nothing more than disturbing skull-shaped toys for little Aztec kids. They studied how they looked, how they were made, and where they were found. But nobody thought to blow into one. When they did, they found that the creepy clay objects made a spine-chilling noise described by one archaeologist as “the scream of a thousand corpses”. Yeah, they’re that creepy. The ancient Aztec Death Whistle is made from clay and is typically shaped like (or decorated as) a human skull. The noise they make, which sounds like thousands of people shrieking, is at the high end of human hearing.  They were first associated with Aztec death rituals after two samples were found in the skeletal hands of…
Tell me more Reeko! »
Other fun stuff

This woman can sing two musical notes at same time (which freaks Reeko out) [VIDEO]

Singer Anne-Maria Hefele can sing two notes at the same time and the result is nothing short of amazing (Reeko says freaky). The otherworldly sounds (Reeko calls them spooky) that she makes are created by moving the fundamental and overtones in opposite directions. She makes these wonderful sounds (Reeko thinks they’re creepy) by shaping her mouth and throat and positioning her tongue to change the path of air as it travels from her lungs past her vocal chords. This type of singing is called throat singing or polyphonic overtone singing. And for those little scientists who are wondering – she is not an alien nor a freak of nature. She has trained her voice to do this! Woman sings two notes at same time (throat singing)…
Tell me more Reeko! »
Sound

Make a homemade Kazoo musical instrument

Homemade Kazoo Ah, the sound of beautiful music. But what some will call music, others will call noise. The lab rats and monkeys are partial to Metallica while Reeko is more of a Beethoven aficionado. Put the two groups of musical tastes together and well, you have a big fight over what radio station to listen to. In this experiment, we’ll create a musical instrument called a Kazoo. With it, we’ll make beautiful music… or noise, depending upon your musical preference. 1 – Cut a small square of wax paper, about 1 inch larger than the end of your cardboard tube. 2 – Center the wax paper square over the end of the tube and wrap the edges. 3 – Put the rubber band around…
Tell me more Reeko! »
Sound

Have you lost your marbles?

Have you lost your marbles? Sound surrounds us all the time.  You may awaken in the morning to the sound of an alarm clock or Dad snoring.  During the day you may hear the cacophony of auto traffic or the hustle and bustle of city life.  But all sounds have one thing in common.   They are formed by the movement or vibration of an object. The sounds we hear every day are formed by the vibration or movement of air.   Basically what happens is sound makes tiny particles in the air, called molecules, bump into each other.  The molecules bump into each other compressing and then expanding to cause the wave to move like a falling column of dominos.  This vibration of molecules is passed…
Tell me more Reeko! »
Sound

Good, good, good vibrations – sound and vibrations experiment

Good, good, good vibrations Sound is actually nothing more than moving air and the way we perceive that moving air with our ears. Now you may be saying "Wait a minute sound is made by moving air?". Sure.  Think about it.  Your dad moves a lot of air - right?  And he makes a nasty sound when he moves it - yes?  Let Reeko Cut off a piece of two foot string (2'). Using a rubber band, attach a metal spoon to the midpoint of the string. Wrap the ends of the string around your fingers. Rest your fingers in your ears (don't stick 'em in too far or you'll poke your brains out!). Standing next to a table, rock your body back and forth…
Tell me more Reeko! »