Wintergatan – ex Machina

Wintergatan Music, Machines and Homemade Music Instruments from Sweden!

I have a fondness for Rube Goldberg machines and clever design.  If it is something that actually makes music as well, then I’m all for it.  After watching this video I felt a need to find out more so exploring I went.  It was a rabbit hole I fell into and am still learning and watching this amazing work.  Have a look and listen to their machine to see what I mean.  It has some genius engineering, is mechanically amazing, and even sounds great too.  This is the culmination of many trials and failures but is ultimately about the music.

Inspired by earlier mechanical musical instruments, especially those in the Speelklok Museum Martin and Wintergatan were determined to make this thing work.  Using CAD and a CNC cutting machine, they created this beautiful human-powered machine that can be “programmed” to play many musical pieces.

I was really fascinated by the way they dealt with time signatures on a program grid (playing triplets vs. 4/4 time for example) and he explains this all very clearly in the many videos.  The following video is just the tip of a very big iceberg but is a great overview of the machine and the work that went into it.

I cannot begin to describe what they have achieved so I suggest, if you have a look at their website ( and check out their videos on YouTube where they show that actual design and construction from prototypes to finished products.

This is truly a case of Deus ex Machina.

WintergatanEnjoy the ride with Martin and Wintergatan.

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