Our didgeridoo explorations have been leading us for some time towards The Era of Presence.  This means more of the “high” information (high frequencies) to come alive in performance or in recording. People are often drawn to bass of didgeridoo which is always there, sometimes not realizing that what players (due to natural properties of bodies) do with the instrument is more in the higher spectrum.

Compared to many traditional and modern instruments didgeridoo as we know it now has relatively small intensity of upper spectrum.  By now we all kind of know it is a matter of material, the harder material, the bigger the upper spectrum. Hardness is not the only factor, of course, but a very important one.  So I have wondered what if I go to extreme with hardness and still maintain the structural properties of wood.

New Duende Wood

To answer this question a lot of time and energy was invested. Finally, a few months ago we received a shipment of some of the hardest woods on Earth. Some of the woods go up to 4500 on Janka hardness scale. This is the same as famous Lignum Vitae which is now unobtainable as it is endangered. The wood we got are not so well known, but they are also not endangered. To imagine the hardness of these woods, we need to go outside of our ideas of wood. It is more a combination of wood and metal. Having super super super tight grain, but also fibers and wood kind of elasticity. The only one comparison that I have found so far that relates this kind of wood with metal can be found  here.

I still don’t really know what this super hard brings us in terms of sound. I don’t even know if it is workable at all, if it can be drilled and chiseled. But I do know that the first time I wanted to go harder with wood and I got eucalyptus (traditionally used for didges) it turned my instruments into Duende.  So this time again I am led not by proofs and evidence, but by a strong feeling I have about it… Stay tuned and you will discover their sound together with us.