The beauty of musical instruments lies partly in their strangeness: odd objects that have mysterious sound-making powers. So really, why not a toilet?

Toilet, Pooh, Pikachu: Cementimental’s “Optical Theremin Loo” packs an optical theremin (with a photoresistor, in other words) into a plastic toy toilet. (Tom at Music Thing should like this as it’s white, not silver.) You can control the flow of light into the device using the lid. That’s just one of Cementimental’s strange creations: on his circuit bending projects page are various other toy modifications, including a fantastic Ghostbusters Ghost Box, Winnie-the-Pooh toy turned black box with plastic man pilot, and a Pikachu who seems to have taken up body modification. Suggestion: do NOT take his project Parcel Bomb on the subway. Cementimental describes these as part of his “anti-quality aesthetic. [insert joke about least favorite music manufacturer here]

Link Love for Benders: Cementimental’s real claim to fame is that he’s got the largest, most obsessive list of circuit bending links anywhere. If you want to see why CDM will never try to catalog bending links, go look at the enormous vastness of his list.

Other candidates for bizareness from the world of circuit bending:

Horrible things happen to Howdy the Talking Pony and a toy turntable gets a new lease on life [carrionsound]

Remember those Beat Blenders toys I pointed out in January, saying they’d make a great bending project? Tech Dweeb has circuit-bent “Bling Bling” and “Dreck” (think Shrek) models. Other fantastic projects: turning the dancing daisy toy into the noisy flowerport Opera Daisy and remaking Billy Bass, that talking bass toy thing.

Thanks to Adrian Dimond for turning me on to stop of this stuff; more on his work later!

Elsewhere on the Web: Get LoFi is a circuit bending blog; this week’s posts include a bent/hacked Sega Master System II and Bent TI99 and Atari 2600, both outputting bizarre video art that looks a bit like what happened when my ColecoVision bit the dust.

Previously on CDM: Reed Ghazala, father of circuit bending, writes CDM shares background on his work; scroll down for some terrific links