Electronic music alters states of consciousness, study finds

Electronic music alters states of consciousness, study finds

The research observed brain activity when participants listened to electronic music at various frequencies.

Photo credit: Michel Didier Joomun  on Unsplash

A recent study from the University of Barcelona, led by Raquel Aparicio Terrés, has discovered that listening to electronic music can change your state of consciousness.

The study was conducted with a small group of 19 young adults, ages 18 to 22. They listened to six different one-minute samples of electronic music with varying frequencies: 1.65 Hz (99 BPM), 2.25 Hz (135 BPM), or 2.85 Hz (171 BPM). The tracks were chosen from artists like Dhamika, Audiomatic, and Vertex.

The research team used electroencephalography to understand how the brain was reacting during the experiment. This method records the brain’s electrical activity using electrodes attached to the scalp. The main aim was to see if the participants’ state of consciousness changed significantly from their normal waking state, something that can also happen with certain drugs, traumatic events, or medication.

To get a better idea of how the music was affecting the brain, participants were asked about their focus level, reaction times, and how the music impacted their consciousness overall. The results suggested a strong link between brain activity and the music’s rhythms, especially at 1.65 Hz, where participants felt a stronger sense of unity.

Terrés thinks that these varying responses could provide useful information about how focus and motor response readiness could be influenced by a change in consciousness. These discoveries could potentially lead to using entrainment’s trance-like states as a tool for stress relief.

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