About this Research Topic
Music is a collection of vibrational events which can induce beneficial or harmful bodily and psychological reactions. Contemporary music production and consumption, however, may often produce sensory saturation and/or overload. Many of its sounds are manipulated in terms of spectrum and dynamic range, rendering them unlike natural sounds. Music listening is a significant form of leisure noise exposure and listening habits and attitudes may promote behaviors that could cause harm to listeners. Listening to loud music may be damaging to the cochlea and cause hearing loss. On the other hand, music, even very loud music, may have benefits for us: particularly in terms of social integration and an enhanced sense of wellbeing and fun. Several questions can therefore be raised. What are the physical effects of sound as transferable and vibrational energy? Are there constraints and biases that shape and modify our reactions to the sounds? What are the perceptual and associated behavioral aspects? And how can we assess the beneficial and harmful effects of sounds that are outside of the ecological range of stimulation?
With a view to answer these questions, contributions are solicited from divergent disciplines, with a view to provide a compilation of viewpoints about the effects loud music can have on human beings while listening to it and thereafter. Some research has investigated the damage caused to the ear and its prevention, but the vibroacoustical impact of music has not yet been widely studied. Furthermore, the positive and negative aspects of listening in terms of its social, behavioral, neurophysiological and psychological causes and effects are also of interest.
In order to discuss these questions, this Research Topic focuses on four major domains which revolve around the effects of loud music: (i) the major constituting and characterizing features of hazardous sounds, (ii) the effects of loud music on biological organisms, (iii) the underlying mechanisms of hearing loss or damage to the auditory system, and (iv) psychological and behavioral aspects of listening to loud and noisy music.
Scientists working on music and noise from separate but pertinent disciplines such as acoustics, psychoacoustics, audiology, sensory biology, neurosciences, psychology and sociology, are encouraged to submit original empirical research, fresh hypothesis and theory articles, and perspective and opinion pieces reflecting on these topics in order to better understand and drive new research on the topic of the possibly harmful effects of loud and noisy music on our physical and mental health.
Articles of interest include themes such as music as noise, vibroacoustic stimulation, low frequency sound and infrasound, noise as a nonspecific biological stressor, noise and annoyance, effects of noise exposure, biological, physiological and psychological responses to sound, physical effects of low-frequency sound and music, noise-induced hearing loss and degeneration of the auditory system, loud-music listening as addiction, vestibular responses to auditory-tactile stimulation, sound as power, loudness war, sensory warfare, enjoyment of loud sound, and hearing loss prevention and regulation.
Keywords: Hearing Loss, Leisure Noise, Noise as Biological Stressor, Prelethal Use of Sound, Biomarkers of Loud Music Listening, Loud Music, Noise Annoyance
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.