Neurophysiology Research

Research Article - Neurophysiology Research (2018) Volume 1, Issue 1

Musical emotions in the brain-a neurophysiological study.

Introduction: Music has accompanied our evolution ever since the dawn of mankind. This project was designed to bridge the connection between music and emotions in our brain. Objectives: The purpose of this analysis is to relate the emotions felt by the participants to the recording of brain electrical activity simultaneously. The article will report the activation of the EEG rhythm bands in our brain and draw conclusions about the areas most affected by music and the emotions mentioned by the participants. Methods: Thirty college students were monitored with EEG recording while subjected to the audition of different excerpts of music, each one associated with a different emotion: joy, sadness, fear and anger. The evoked emotions were evaluated through behavioural ratings and the EEG was recorded with an electrode cap in order to collect electroencephalography data in 13 channels with reference to the mastoids. The findings were fully analysed and compared to their rest recordings. Results: The predominance of left hemisphere activation with pleasant feelings and right activation with unpleasant ones was notorious. The excerpt that transmitted positive valence emotions (joy) demonstrated asymmetry in the alpha band predominantly in the left central and parietal lobe while the excerpts that induced unpleasant emotions (sadness and fear) were associated with an increased coherent activity towards the right frontal-temporal regions. Plus, there was an association between emotions that provoke a behavioural approach (joy and anger) and the left-sided areas of the brain and between the emotions that cause withdrawal behaviour (sadness and fear) and the right hemisphere. Conclusion: This investigation led to the recruitment of several networks in the brain electrical activity through the EEG involved in the processing of music, transporting us into the emotions’ world. We conclude that there is a noticeable relation between the music and the emotions felt, having great influence in the patterns of cerebral activation.

Author(s): Patrícia Gomes, Telmo Pereira, Jorge Conde

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