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artists mentioned by Boards of Canada in their interviews


The Smallest Weird Number

The Smallest Weird Number
Running time 1:17
Appears on Geogaddi

"The Smallest Weird Number" is track number 9 on the album Geogaddi. An excerpt of the track appears in the video portion of the Trans Canada Highway Microsite.


  • "The Smallest Weird Number" is 70. As in Music70, BoC's own label. A "weird number" is a number that is "abundant" but not "semi-perfect". Meaning? Take all the "proper divisors" of 70 (i.e. all the divisors of 70 except for 70 itself). They are 1, 2, 5, 7, 10, 14, 35. When the proper divisors add up to more than the original number, the original number is said to be abundant. For 70: 1+2+5+7+10+14+35 = 74 > 70, so 70 is "abundant". Now, if there was some SUBSET of these numbers 1, 2, 5, 7, 10, 14, 35 which added up to 70, then 70 would be said to be "semi-perfect" (or "pseudoperfect") But there isn't. Try it. You can make 71 by missing out the 1 and the 2, or you can make 69 by missing out the 5, but you can't make 70. I hope that explanation is clear. The first few weird numbers are: 70, 836, 4030, 5830, 7192, 7912, 9272, 10430, 10570, 10792. You can find a longer list of weird numbers in the "online encyclopedia of integer sequences", from which my shorter listing was taken. This explanation of weird numbers by [DC].
  • Even though the track runs for 1:17, the melody cuts out at exactly 1:10 (70 seconds).

Samples / Lyrics[edit]

  • At 0:03, the ending of "When the Music Starts to Play" by The Incredible String Band is heard in reverse and at a lower speed.[1] The sample seems to have been taken from an old phonograph record, as crackling is present.
  • From the beginning until around 0:18, the song samples birds singing in the documentary "On the Tracks of the Wild Otter (1983)".[2] [3] [4] The sample can be heard at around 26:53.
  • "R35TT B10" appears in reverse at 0:11. Reverb has been applied to the last chord heard in the present track.


  • In mathematics, the smallest weird number is 70. 70 is part of the name of the band's private label (music70); "sixtyten" is another way of saying 70.


External links[edit]


  1. http://twoism.org/forum/viewtopic.php?p=244015#p244015
  2. http://www.wildfilmhistory.org/film/467/On+the+Tracks+of+the+Wild+Otter.html