My notes from the ISMIR 2008 - invited speaker talk Abstract: In my talk, I will describe five properties that help make music sound tonal — or “good,” to most listeners. I will then show that combining these properties is mathematically non-trivial, with the consequence that space of possible tonal musics is severely constrained. This leads me to construct higher-dimensional geometrical representations of musical structure, in which it is clear how the various properties can be combined. Finally, I will show that Western music combines these five properties at two different temporal levels: the immediate level of the chord, and the long-term level of the scale. The resulting music is hierarchically self-similar, exploiting the same basic procedures on two different time scales. In fact, one and the same twisted cubic lattice describes the musical relationships among common chords and scales.

In this talk, Dmitri explained his geometrical model of music structure. He uses the model to explain ow harmony and counterpoint. The gist of the talk can be found in this Science article: The Geometry of Musical Chords. A good talk, interesting subject matter (but I must admit I'm skeptical).

More info: The Geometry of Music. F4F1C87A-8B1A-4927-AE47-EC2EE65131F4.jpg


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