The iMusicBodyRhythm is a device that “creates a synchronicity of all your senses and biorhythms,” according to the chirpy inventor Uwe Diegel. In plainer terms, it’s a vest that drums on your shoulders in time to music from your iPhone. This is meant to be a pleasant sensation, alternately stimulating and relaxing, and not at all like someone actually drumming on your shoulders while you listen to music.
It’s stylish as well as functional, with a versatile all-white iTheme over-the-shoulder design that fits into any milieu, whether you’re at a lobster feast, huddled in a lifeboat, or clinging to the wing of a drifting airplane in the unlikely event of a water landing.
Check out the video: Uwe is a charming and enthusiastic spokesman who sounds like he eats cupcakes sprinkled with umlauts for lunch. He fires up the app and demonstrates how the device (which, by the way, does NOT make you look like you’re wearing a padded toilet seat around your neck) begins twitching and vibrating like a sock full of hamsters. “Let your body hear the music,” Uwe entreats. “Let your body feel the music,” he adds. “Let your body groove to the music. Hey, hey, c’mon, Vogue.”
No, he doesn’t say that last part, because this isn’t just a gadget for having fun and relaxing, he explains. It’s more than that. It’s… uh… it’s for… um. Hey! It has Bluetooth!
Something mentioned in the specs but not emphasized in the photographs – to the point that it seems a little sketchy – is that this electrified rattle bib runs on 120 volts. I think that means either there are 80 AA cells crammed in there somehow or it plugs into the wall. A cord might be cumbersome if you plan on wearing your iDickie out to the clubs. It certainly wouldn’t be easy keeping it from tangling up on Uwe’s foosball table. But the specs also say it weighs five pounds, so maybe it runs on batteries after all. Or maybe it just runs on funk.
One mode of the app processes your music, extracts the beat, then creates the drum rhythm in sync with the tune. But that’s only half the story. In another mode the app will let you create your own beat pattern by shaking your iPhone. Let me repeat that, because it might be a little technical for some readers: You make a striking motion with your phone, and the app creates the sensation of being struck on the shoulder.
Perhaps I haven’t made that clear enough – before this technology came along, if you wanted to hit yourself on the shoulder you had to use your own damn hands. That’s all over. Now, patting out rhythms on your own shoulders is as easy as patting out rhythms in thin air. That alone is worth the $50K price tag to bring the iMusicBodyRhythm to market.