5 Unusual Musical Instruments that Will Blow You Away

It’s no secret that music has been an integral part of the human experience. Ever since the first birds whistled their songs through the trees, human beings have had a desire to express themselves through music. Every so often we will attempt to reshape music into new and distinct ways.

We combed the internet to find the most unusual instruments. While this list could go on for miles, here are just a few that caught our attention for various reasons. Check out these 5 instruments below that take music to a whole new level.

  1. The Gameleste
  2. The Hydraulophone
  3. The Marble Machine
  4. Theremin
  5. Hyper bass Flute


In 2011, Norweigan artist Bjork set out to create this instrument. A hybrid fusion of the Celeste and the Gamelin.

The Celestia

The Celeste

Celeste is an Idiophone and is operated by a keyboard. with similar attributes to the Glockenspiel, the most notable work of music to feature a Celeste is the Dance Of The Sugar Plum Fairy from Tschovski’s ballet “The Nutcracker” The natural vibrato of the traditional Celeste, is one reason why The Gameleste has such a resonant sound.

The Gamelan

A group of Gamelin Musicians. This drumset is known as a Bonang.

According to the Wikipedia:

Gamelan is the traditional ensemble music of Javanese, Sundanese, and Balinese in Indonesia, made up predominantly of percussive instruments., such as  metallophones, xylophones, flutes, gongs, voices, as well as bowed and plucked strings.


By combining both the Gamelan and Celeste, the final created instrument known as the Gameleste, is an ethereal and multifascited instrument that captivates the sensibility of the listener.

What does the Gameleste sound like?

Take a listen and see for yourself.


Named by inventor Steve Mann in 2012, the Hyrdaulophone is a tonal instrument that produces music by employing water power through a long tube. Various holes are cut into the side to make the sound.

The Hydraulophone has been described as an underwater pipe organ. It employs the use of jets or pumps to force the water through the tube and this in turn creates the powerful notes that you hear. Here is a video of Steve Mann playing the Hydrolophone in his garden. He also demonstrates the different types of instruments that exist.


The Marble Machine

The marble Machine was inspired by composer Martin Molin from the swedish band Wintergartin and features 2000 marbles.

The Marble Machine is a music box that uses marbles to play instruments. The machine is powered by a hand-crank, and works by raising steel marbles through the machine into multiple feeder tubes, where they are then released from height via programmable release gates, falling and striking a musical instrument below. Instruments played by marbles striking them include vibraphone, bass guitar, cymbal, and emulated kick drum, high hat and snare drum sounds using contact microphones.




Arguably one of the most fascinating instruments of the 20th century. The Theremin is considered the grandfather of all modern electrical instruments. Using electrical currents and a radio wave, the individual generates sound by moving their hands to various distances from the conductive rod. It is is essentially an instrument that is played without human touch. Léon Theremin patented the device in 1928. 

Leon Theremin playing the Theremin in 1928

This instrument has been the fascination of both music and science fiction enthusiasts since its release.

The Theremin is one of the best examples of music and technology. Harnessing the electrical impulses inside of the human body to conjure an unbelievable array of sounds.


The Hyperbass Flute

The Hyperbass flute is an extremely rare and the largest and lowest pitched instrument in the flute family, with tubing reaching over 15 metres (49 ft) in length. It is pitched in C, four octaves below the concert flute (three octaves below the bass flute, two octaves below the contrabass flute, and one octave below the double contrabass flute), with its lowest note being C0, one octave below the lowest C on a standard piano. At 16 hertz, this is below what is generally considered the range of human hearing (20 to 20,000 Hz).

The Hyperbass flute is made of PVC and wood.[1] There appear to be wide tone holes, made from standard tee fittings, but without keys; these are covered with the palms of the hands.

The first known example of the instrument was built by Francesco Romei, a Florentine craftsman, for Italian flautist Roberto Fabbriciani. Fabbriciani is the inventor and primary performer of this instrument. He calls it hyperbass flute and flauto iperbasso in Italian.[2]



There is no doubt that there are some unusual instruments. As a final question:  What instrument caught your attention? Is there any that we should add in the future? let us know in the comments below.