McMaster researchers study attraction to bass tones

Hamilton, ON, Canada / AM900 CHML

Researchers at the McMaster University Institute for Music and the Mind have discovered why listeners gravitate towards deeper bass tones.

Participants in an experiment were played high and low pitched tones at the same time repeatedly in sequence.

Researchers found that the brain was better at detecting when the lower tone occurred too soon compared to higher tone.

The study concluded that when the bass is loud and rock solid, we have an easier time following along to the rhythm of a song.

These results explain why in musical systems around the world the rhythm is carried by lower-pitched instruments.

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