## Polarity Experiment

In the last post I did a consonance experiment, listening to intervals with wider and wider spacing. In that experiment, I kept the axis (3) and direction (multiplication, overtonal) the same, and increased the distance. This time I’ll keep the axis and the distance the same, and switch direction. Each illustration will compare a note with…

## Consonance Experiment

In my last post I raised the idea that the consonance of an interval is not just one thing, but has two distinct parts: The sensation created by the sound of the two notes played together — smooth or rough, pleasant or unpleasant The sense of stability of the note — does it feel restful,…

## The Untempered Chromatic Scale (Part 1)

The familiar 12-note scale is also called the chromatic scale. There are many ways to generate an untempered version of such a scale. The oldest way seems to be Pythagorean tuning. When you multiply a frequency by 3, you get a new note, an octave plus a fifth above. Multiply by 3 again, and you get…

## Prime Numbers and the Big Bang

Every prime number generates a new musical universe. Prime numbers are numbers, greater than one, that can only be evenly divided by themselves and 1. All other numbers are composite — that is, they can be made by multiplying two or more primes. 1) Multiplying by 1 does nothing. 1 is a singularity, the universe before the…