Music is a powerful medium. It can evoke strong emotions in humans.
A recent Canadian study found that when we listen to music we like, our brain releases dopamine, a pleasure-promoting neurotransmitter. Well that makes sense. But what about the flip-side? What happens to our brains when we hear music we don't like?
I would like to offer my own anecdotal evidence to the Canadian neuroscientists.
One morning not so long ago, I woke up to the sound of what I would describe as late-20th-century-techno-pop-fusion. It evoked a strong emotion in me. Fury.
I sat up and looked out the window. I saw crowds of innocent children on the school field across the valley, being forced by someone in an identity-masking animal costume, to perform some sort of synchronised routine to the techno-pop.
The music was ricocheting back and forth between the surrounding hills creating a terrifying cocoon of techno-pop horror, in which I found myself firmly encased.
I fled from my bedroom, stumbling upon my flatmate Micah in the hallway.
A wave of compassion washed over me. He must be suffering too. We were all in this together!
"Are you okay?" I asked him in distress.
He looked confused.
Can't you hear that?" I said incredulously.
"Hear what?" he replied.
"That horrendous music from across the valley!"
"Oh, that. I just assumed it was coming from your bedroom" he said nonchalantly.
If there's one thing that can evoke a stronger emotion in me than late-20th-century-techno-pop-fusion, it is the assumption of a person who is known to me that I might
a) listen to
or c) actively promote music of a late-20th-century-techno-pop-fusion variety.
Fury. Musically-induced blind rage.
There was only one thing for it...