• Harmonic Surprise
  • Started by Leonard Scaper
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Re: Harmonic Surprise
Reply #15 on: December 15, 2018, 17:08:52
I just stumbled across this thread and find it very interesting.

I suppose if a song has NO element of surprise or unexpectedness, it may feel boring or not exciting. Unstimulating.  But if it's got too MUCH surprise or too much weirdness, unexpectedness or unfamiliarity, it may feel unrelatable or uncomfortable.

Maybe it's kinda like a suspense / thriller movie. You need the "surprise / tension / unexpected element / discomfort" and then to truly appreciate that, you need some form of "comfort / relief / normality". In fact, you need both to appreciate either.

It all depends what kind of song you're listening to though. Avant garde jazz with no surprises doesn't even exist. Pure rock music that is all comfortably head banging can be a good thing.

I guess it also depends how the surprise part is introduced. Melodically? Lyrically? Odd key or tempo changes? Vocal weirdness? Instrumentally? The appearance of the artist?

Ok, I'm half asleep now.
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Re: Harmonic Surprise
Reply #16 on: December 15, 2018, 23:21:18
Thanks @monty_lameer  for digging up this indeed interesting discussion.
Music needs to have some familiar ingredients but can suprise in other departments. May be if the chords are standard, but the timing is odd, or if you have very tight timing but surprising sounds, that will keep the listener paying attention.
Possibly the socalled "incongruity theory" in humor has something to do with this.

recommending https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/How_Music_Works "How music works", book by David Byrne.

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