Macquarie University’s music lab has conducted a new study in which 32 death metal fans and 48 non-fans were shown innocuous images in one eye and violent images in the other, while listening to either Bloodbath‘s “Eaten” or Pharrel Williams‘ “Happy.“ After the test, researchers found that the death metal fans were not desensitized to violence and that listening to the music actually brought them feelings of joy and empowerment.
Prof Bill Thompson told BBC the following:
“[Death metal] fans are nice people. They’re not going to go out and hurt someone.
The dominant emotional response to this music is joy and empowerment. And I think that to listen to this music and to transform it into an empowering, beautiful experience – that’s an amazing thing.”
Nick Holmes (Bloodbath, Paradise Lost) also talked a bit about the study, in part saying:
“The majority of death metal fans are intelligent, thoughtful people who just have a passion for the music. “It’s the equivalent of people who are obsessed with horror movies or even battle re-enactments.”
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