Metalheads, we have a bad reputation in the world! People think that we are Satanist (did they know that a style of metal is called White Metal?), people think that metal is only noise with puking-pig-horrible-voice (This is the grindcore! There are many many many kind of metal which are really different each other, including kind of voice, music and lyrics) or we are depressed and suicidal… for this last assumption a recent scientific paper have shown that we are normal! Yes we are! Ok some of band or metal style speaks about Satan, Death, Occult, Murder, Torture and many other not really happy topics and generally when you see the name of the band or its album artwork you can guess the topic of lyrics and sometimes even the kind of metal. But still we are mentaly OK.
A French scientific team decides to focus on Metal Music and Mental Health in France. Because we have a bad reputation, because a big part of the present French government want to stop the HellFest (Metal Festival in Clisson), because stupid people says “metal music is bad, corrupt and put our children on the wrong way, also it push them to suicide and making violent act”, because we wear almost only black clothes (and some have many tattoos and piercing), this scientific paper bring the truth in Hell about our mental health mainly anxiety and depression.
How they have done that?
To detect anxiety and depression they have used the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS).
They have taken into account these several factors: age, gender, employment status, education and ﬁeld of study, body modiﬁcation (piercing, tattoos, scarifications), motivation and number of and type of participation at metal concerts
282 males and 39 females (= 321 French metalheads) were selected. They have found them by internet metal community and they have taken only those have filled completely the questionnaire. The mean age is 22.67 years old (between 13-44 years old).
What are the results? Here the result and some explanations about them.
The mean of the score for the HADS is far lower than the cut-off which determines the presence of anxiety and depression. Except and like for every population, 15.58% has high probability of anxiety and 3.43% for depression. → Globally metalheads are really not anxious or depressed.
Gender, age, number of concerts per year, preferred musical style and body modiﬁcation practices of tattooing and piercing had no link to mental health, in terms of either anxiety or depression. → So listening black and death metal don’t affect you mental health even if you listen to Dark Funeral, go often to death metal concert and have tattoos representing Baphomet.
Metalheads with high grade have less anxiety. Also those who have an arts and literature background have more anxiety than those have a scientific background. And finally the lower the employment status, the higher the level of depression and of anxiety. → These are general anxiety and depression factors finding in all population, it is not specify to metal music fans.
The score of HADS for depression and anxiety of metal lyrics writer are higher compared to other groups. Alcohol consumers during metal gig have a higher score of HADS for anxiety than the other groups and persons with scarification have a higher score of HADS for anxiety. But these score are still under the cut-off to determine presence of anxiety or depression. → For instance in these cases we don’t know whether songwriters are inspired because there are anxious and depressed or metal writing song increases anxiety and depression and even, for this metal music fan population, the HADS score remains low.
Finally and about ritual practicing during metal concert, people who do ‘‘stage diving,’’ ‘‘moshing’’ and ‘‘Bravehearting’’ were not linked to mental health. But metalhead who do ‘‘pogoing’’ are less anxious than other groups contrary to person who do ‘‘slamming’. → Funny correlation isn’t it? The significant relation is statistically really weak, so don’t really take into account about metal concert dance and mental hearth.
We are on good health! Yeahhhh \,,/ So fans of metal are not anxious or depressed! No, horror picture representing dying and suffering persons with theirs guts getting out of their body and with blood everywhere on album artwork, lyrics about death and promoting the supremacy of Satan, dark clothes and tattoos did not affect our mental health contrary what people thinks. Actually it could be the contrary, according to the paper and other studies, being confronted to death openly and directly help to manage and be more comfortable with death in general and in real life. So it could explain why metalheads have a lower anxiety and depression than the rest of population, because we used to hear and see horror, death, suicide and torture ritual by metal music, lyrics and artworks.
We all have a system called pleasure and reward circuitry inside our brain. Thanks to this system we feel pleasure when we eat, have sex, drink beer, win something etc. It is also this circuitry which is affected by all kind of drugs. One of the neurotransmitter involved in this pleasure is Dopamine.
Globally this system is necessary for survival but not only! According to a recent paper “Anatomically distinct dopamine release during anticipation and experience of peak emotion to music”, music also activates the emotion and reward system by dopamine, so now you know why you are euphoric and have a good pleasure when you listen to music I will be clear when I said Music I speak about Metal or Classical music, not Justin Bieber or Eurodance and other kind of horrible noses which induce ear bleeding (at least to me).
How they have found that?
8 persons had to choose a song which gives them the most pleasure and obligatory induced chills when they listen to it.
Verifying that the chills response is a good representation of emotional pleasure during music listening. Briefly when you listen a song which give you pleasure, your autonomic nervous system is activated and induces: increasing of heart rate, respiration and electrodermal response; decrease temperature and blood volume pulse. In this case, chill (which is not obligatory or necessary to stimulate the reward system during music listening and also chill is not specific to pleasure but also to fear) is correlated with these same autonomic responses.
PETscan, boring thing but briefly they have injected [11C]raclopride which binds D2-receptor of dopamine (neurotransmitter involved in pleasure) and by PETscan they have measured the activity of this radioactive element and where it is happens on the brain.
fMRI, also boring thing but it is used to assess indirectly the activity of the brain. The participants had to press a button when they had chills during the listening session and by fMRI it is possible to see if the activity of the brain increase or decrease after and before this button pushing.
What they have found?
When a pleasurable music is listened, the pleasure and reward system (ventral and dorsal striatum, mostly in the right caudate and the right nucleus accumbens) are activated by increasing of dopamine, but not during a neutral music excerpts.
The dorsal (the caudate) and ventral subdivisions (nucleus accumbens) of the striatum as contributing to the anticipation and experience, respectively, of peak pleasure moments during music listening
What that fucking means?!
Music (an abstract reward) activates directly you pleasure and reward circuitry by dopamine release as drugs, food and sex do.
Anticipation of pleasure moment and pleasure moment itself involved two different part of the reward circuitry.
Well, ok music = pleasure but in what this good study is implicated to me?
This abstract form of pleasure which are not a vital/survival element activated directly your rewards system. That is why you feel good in concert, when you listen good music and so on.
These areas of the rewards system are interconnected with other brain area involved in emotion, learning of stimulus-responses associations etc. That means, music could touch your emotion or could induce an association/reinforcement to something else. That could explain why music is used in rituals and fucking marketing brain washing.
Now, I will induce pleasure to myself by music with the song Invocations Beyond The Outer-World Night of Bal-Sagoth.
Salimpoor VN, Benovoy M, Larcher K, Dagher A, & Zatorre RJ (2011). Anatomically distinct dopamine release during anticipation and experience of peak emotion to music. Nature neuroscience, 14 (2), 257-62 PMID: 21217764
I am a metalhead girl and I like headbang my head in rhythm of good black/death metal songs. My favorite headbang technique is called Windmill! \,,/
Generally headbanging is not really dangerous. According the amount of metal concert that I did, I have never had severe trouble or loss of consciousness, same for other metal guys present in the concert hall. Just muscular pains the day after like you have muscular pain after going to the gym. Also loss of equilibrium during the first minute after headbanging, it is normal the vestibular system is completely shacked and it is worst with couple liter of beer so nothing really serious.
I will not going into the detail of the method and their mathematical model which are not adapted to headbanging because the model is for one head circular moving (angle are from 40° to 120°) and not a periodical head moving. Also and in my opinion the result are extremely overestimated. Seriously, if they really wanted to speak about a potential injury caused by headbang, they should have take songs which the tempo goes above 180 bpm (beats per minute). Because 180bpm is slow, black and death metal have a tempo between 180 and 240 bmp. Then, 120° for headbanging is ok, but why not more? Windmill technique asks more than 120°. Overestimated because and according their model, headbanging (remember it is just one acceleration of the head, not a real headbanging) with an angle of 105° at 160 bpm should induce unconsciousness during less than 1 hour and with an angle of 120° at 180 bpm should induce unconsciousness during 1 to 6 hours!!! I many time headbanged with a huge window of head moving, really quickly and more than 5 minutes nonstop or 1 hour cumulated during the concert and I never had a loss of consciousness neither people around me.
Now, Hellbrothers and Hellsisters, let’s have fun! The authors of the paper give us some advice to avoid and prevent damage and neck/brain injuries caused by heandanging. Are you ready to laugh?
Advice 1: Neck Training
It is make sense. Like for making sport, training before and after could help to avoid muscular soreness the next morning. Now just imagine a concert of Mayhem when the singer says to the audience: “before to start the concert, we all are going to train our neck during 5 minutes! Come on guys! Head circle movement… yes like this”. Do you imagine a concert hall full of metalhead which black and with painting on their face and wearring beautiful dark clothes with big pikes making neck training? No, me neither.
Advice 2: Asking AC/DC to stop playing the song Highway to Hell for the song Moon River of Andy Williams. (No it is not a joke, they have seriously written that)
If you have no idea about Andy Williams and his wonderful song Moon River, this video will help you!
Advice 3: Wearing medical neck protection
Well, but only if it is customizable. In black with long pikes?! How can we headbang with that ha?! Oh yes, i forget… headbanging is the son of Satan we have to stop doing this.
Advice 4: “substitution of adult oriented rock and easy listening music such as the controls (cf Whitney Houston, Lionel Richie, Styx), or others including Michael Bolton, Celine Dion, Enya, and Richard Clayderman, for heavy metal”
Yes I laughed like hell when I read that! I just imagine all fan of Deströyer666 going to a concert of Celine Dion and Richard Clayderman. It would be wonderful.
Conclusion: Metalheads! From now and for your health (it is sciences who said!)
You will no more listen to Lord Belial but Michael Bolton.
Lord Belial – Devilish Enlightenment
Michael Bolton – Said I Loved You…But I Lied
You will no more listen to Arch Enemy but Céline Dion.
ARCH ENEMY – Nemesis
Celine Dion – Pour Que Tu M’Aimes Encore
You will no more listen to Blotted Science but Richard Clayderman.
Blotted Science – Synaptic Plasticity
Richard Clayderman – Ballade pour Adeline
Yeeees that’s scary my like heaven too! Too bad for the potential injury caused by headbanging, I will not stop it and I will not change my musical taste for this… hmm… this music which they advice us. NO WAY!
Actually, seeing a handsome guy with long hair and a goat who headbang, it excites me . Also it is really useful to be closed to a headbanger when it is really hot inside the concert hall, he/she is a human-fan.
Seriously headbanging is not a safety practicing (ok like everything :/). If like me, you will continue to headbang even this caution, at least if you have any kind of symptoms, pain, extreme dizziness (not just loss of equilibrium less than 1 minute just after a session of headbanging), alteration of consciousness or whatever which seems not usual or not normal, stop immediately shaking your head and in case consult a doctor. It will be to bad to miss concerts of Lord Belial’s ressurection.
Patton D, & McIntosh A (2008). Head and neck injury risks in heavy metal: head bangers stuck between rock and a hard bass. BMJ (Clinical research ed.), 337 PMID: 19091761
Egnor MR, Page LK, & David C (1991). Vertebral artery aneurysm–a unique hazard of head banging by heavy metal rockers. Case report. Pediatric neurosurgery, 17 (3), 135-8 PMID: 1819327
Neyaz Z, Kandpal H, Sharma R, & Kale S (2006). ‘Head banging’ during rock show causing subdural hematoma. Neurology India, 54 (3), 319-20 PMID: 16936407
Guys, today you will know that your musical taste is crucial for your sex appeal.
Thanks to BlackWolf, he has found a paper named Effects of Associating with Musical Genres on Heterosexual Attraction. The only problem is my university doesn’t have access to the journal communication research, so i only have access to the abstract and the post on the blog laweekly.
Apparently our kind of music reflects our values, i.e. listening shit pop music means conformity, rock means rebellious, jazz means open to experience… Rock = rebellious? lol! So what about black metal? No seriously, rock doesn’t mean rebellious at all!
Anyway, some types of music are more attractive than other according the study of Zillman and Bhatia.
The conclusion is
Guys and Girls don’t say that you love country music because you will repel the opposite sex! If you are a guy (opposite effect for women), don’t hesitate to scream your love for heavy metal it will give you a rebellious touch that every girl like. Girls (opposite effect for man) your classical music taste helps you to attract guys! Also man care about the musical taste of women and whether they share the same contrary to women who don’t care.
Well, well, well, I am a metalhead and I can’t really imagine myself being with someone listening completely opposite music like white metal, Christian rock, reggae/ska, pop / rock and so on. Because I spend a lot of time in metal bar and concert and by concert I mean metal concert, no other kind. I am ok with blues, rock 60-70’s and classic music because I like that too.
Actually it is at least a little bit true about musical taste reflecting value. I mean if guy says to me “I listen to pop / rock music” or “I listen to radio” I clearly run away as fast as I can! For me someone who listens to pop or rock is a boring and simple person. Ok I don’t mean that every guys who like pop are simple but this kinds of music reflect these values for me, so I avoid them! Finally if I like people who listen to black/death metal it is not because it sounds “rebellious” or “unconformity” but just because I like this type too.
Anyway, guys, listen to music that you like, don’t change it for anyone!
ZILLMANN D. and BHATIA A., Effects of Associating with Musical Genres on Heterosexual Attraction., Communication Research April 1989 vol. 16 no. 2 263-288.