Low-end bass makes people dance more, according to a new report from a group of neuroscientists published in the Current Biology journal.
The new study gathered data from a 55-minute DJ set by Canadian duo Orphx, during which attendees were asked to wear motion-capture headbands. Researchers turned on and off specialised very low frequency (VLF) speakers intermittently every 2.5 minutes during the performance and then monitored the crowd's movement.
It was discovered that the undetectable VLF sound (aka sub-bass) elicits 11.8% more movement from dancers, even though they are not "consciously aware" of the frequencies. At the end of the set, 51 attendees filled out a questionnaire that asked whether they could feel the music in their body, and whether these "bodily sensations" propelled them to move.
“We’d lose all ecological validity if we just cranked the speakers, they become bone-rattling and everyone can tell ‘oh something different is really happening here’,” explained Dr Daniel Cameron, a neuroscientist who first penned the work at McMaster University in Canada. “We didn’t want them to be aware of what we’re doing.”
“This is real world – real electronic music dance concert – validation that the bass really does make people dance more, and this isn’t just something that comes from our conscious awareness," he said.
Via the Guardian