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The Cognitive Neuroscience of Music$
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Isabelle Peretz and Robert J. Zatorre

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780198525202

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198525202.001.0001

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The Neural Processing of Complex Sounds

The Neural Processing of Complex Sounds

(p.168) Chapter 11 The Neural Processing of Complex Sounds
The Cognitive Neuroscience of Music

Timothy D. Griffiths

Oxford University Press

This chapter addresses the temporal processing of complex sounds relevant to musical analysis. Functional imaging studies, using positron emission tomography (PET), functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and magnetoencephalography (MEG), and the psychophysical assessment of patients with lesions allow two different approaches to this. Functional imaging allows the determination of structures normally involved in temporal analysis, while patient studies allow inference about the necessary structures for temporal analysis. Both approaches suggest a hierarchal organization in the brain corresponding to the processing of music. The features of individual notes are analyzed in the pathway up to and including the auditory cortices, while higher-order patterns formed by those features are investigated by distributed networks in the temporal lobe and frontal lobes distinct from the auditory cortices. Both studies of humans with brain lesions and functional imaging provide convergent evidence for the existence of a neural substrate for the processing of sound sequences that is hierarchal in organization.

Keywords:   neural processing, complex sounds, musical analysis, functional imaging, brain lesions, temporal lobe, frontal lobes, temporal analysis

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