Audio Acid: Affective Design and the Psychoacoustic Trip (2017)

Ryan LaLiberty
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As a New Age commodity, binaural beat audio comes packed up with the pseudoscientific imagery and discourses of the loose social movement. If this material is to believed, the listener can expect a broad range of effects, from increased sexual prowess to a deeper connection with the infinite cosmos. While refraining from critiquing such claims, this paper explores how affective experience has been –– and is being –– designed and commodified through binaural beat audio, in the interplay of synthesized sound and the sensing body. The affective subjects of binaural beats are positioned across materialities and temporalities, from the psychoacoustic capacities of the body, to the abilities of precision-synthesized sound towards producing the specific microtemporalities of binaural beat audio. This paper will situate these materialities and temporalities historically, with an ear lent to the processes of “crystallization,” to use the language of Bruno Latour, that have cemented binaural beat audio as contemporary media objects.
typeresearch exposition
last modified04/07/2017
share statusprivate
affiliationUniversity of Massachusetts - Amherst
licenseAll rights reserved
published inJournal of Sonic Studies
portal issue14. Issue 14

Simple Media

id name copyright license
353302 440/450 Hz Binaural Beat Ryan LaLiberty All rights reserved
291833 WARNING! Extremely Powerful Third Eye Opening Binaural Beat Meditation iGodMind Subliminal and Meditation Mind Movies All rights reserved
291816 Figure 2 Tuning Fork unknown All rights reserved
291810 Figure 1 Binaual Beats Creative Commons All rights reserved

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