PSYCHOLOGICAL ASPECTS IN (MICRO)INTERVALS OF THE JUST INTONATION SYSTEM
Keywords:just intonation, microintervals, drone music, La Monte Young, hindustani raga, shruti
This study presents the results of research on the psychological aspects of exactly calculated just intonation intervals, which
was performed in the form of a listening test. These micro-interval nuances (śruti) are attributed specific emotions or feelings in ancient
Indian music-theoretical texts, just as in the European tradition, various extra-musical qualities have been attributed to different intervals or modes since the Antiquity. The purpose of the research was therefore to try to map the psychological aspects of the selected
intervals and to verify whether the respondents agreed on them. In contrast to similar research testing tempered intervals, here we are
dealing with precisely tuned concords of characteristic intervals of just intonation systems (5-limit and 7-limit just intonation), realized
in the form of sustained drones. The results of this research show that listening to isolated sustained concords can induce a wide range
of responses in the listener, which are identical or similar for a significant number of respondents. Moreover, in some cases, the reactions to a given interval/emotion combination coincide or resemble the characteristics given by Indian or European traditions. All the
results of the research have been summarized in a table which can serve practical purposes.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Tomáš Reindl, Viktor Hruška, Marek Frič
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