Sunday, March 26, 2023

less bass music will inspire more people to dance

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A new study found that people danced 11.8 percent longer when very low-frequency bass was present.

To find out how different aspects of music affect the body, researchers turned a live electronic music concert into a laboratory study by introducing bass levels on the speakers that mimic listening and monitoring crowd movements. It was too little for

During the 45-minute concert, the researchers manipulated the very few bass-playing speakers, turning them on and off every two minutes. They found that the amount of movement was 12 percent higher when the speaker was on.

“I trained as a drummer, and most of my research career has focused on the rhythmic aspects of music and how they move us,” says first author Daniel Cameron, a neuroscientist at McMaster University. “Music is a biological curiosity—it doesn’t reproduce us, it doesn’t feed us, and it doesn’t shelter us, so why do humans like it and why do they like it?”

Cameron McMaster conducts research at LiveLab, which links science with live performance in a unique research theatre. It is equipped with 3D motion capture, a Mayer sound system that can replicate various concert environments, and advanced speakers that can produce extremely low frequencies, so low they were undetectable to the human ear.

For the current biology study, Cameron and colleagues recruited participants attending a LiveLab concert for the electronic music duo Orphx. Concert-goers were fitted with motion-sensing headbands to monitor their dance moves. Additionally, they were asked to fill out survey forms before and after the event. These forms were used to ensure that sound could not be detected, to measure the enjoyment of a concert, and to investigate how the music felt physically.


The musicians were excited to participate because of their interest in the idea that bass can change how music is experienced by affecting movement, says Cameron. “The study had high ecological validity, as it was a real music and dance experience for people at a real live show.”

The sense of vibration through touch and the interaction between the inner ear and the brain is closely related to the motor system. The researchers speculate that these physical processes are at work in the neural connection between music and movement. This anatomy can pick up on low frequencies and affect the perception of “groove”, spontaneous tempo and rhythm perception.

“Very low frequencies can also affect vestibular sensitivity,” says Cameron, adding that people’s experience of movement is linked to looking at the effects of low frequencies on the vestibular, tactile and auditory pathways to narrow down the brain mechanisms involved. will be needed.”

The study appears November 7 in the journal Current Biology.


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