Formal Functions of Metric Dissonance in Rock Music

by Nicole Biamonte

Music Theory Online 20.2, June 2014

This article explores the interactions of metric dissonance with phrase structure and form in rock music, offers categorization schemes for common formal functions of metric dissonance, and presents several corpus studies of metric dissonance in the works of single artists and bands as well as in a cross-section of rock songs. These data allow for comparative analyses of the metric profile of a given artist or band, suggest genre correlations with particular metric patterns, and demonstrate a trend of increasing metric dissonance throughout the history of rock.

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