The Sound Machine

Roald Dahl's "The Sound Machine", first published in the September 17, 1949 issue of The New Yorker, proposes a device that can pick up high frequency sounds and convert them into the range audible by humans. The inventor of the machine first hears shrieks of roses being cut by a neighbor. Taking an axe to a beech tree the next day, he is surprised to hear "a harsh, noteless, enormous noise, a growling, low-pitched, screaming sound..."

A radio dramatization of the story is on archive.org in MP3 format.

Several short films have been inspired by the short story. Two on YouTube are embedded below.

Scans of the original issue of The New Yorker are available via one-time payment or subscription at their site.

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