Music has a peculiar power.
It's long been known that listening to classical music — the Mozart Effect — can help students preparing for exams. And a gardening expert recently discovered that plants actually become stronger and more disease resistant if they're exposed to Black Sabbath's "Sweat Leaf" and other rockers.
But much in the same way that for every noble jedi knight there's an evil sith lord running around, music can also harvest the powers of darkness.
From feuds, to suicide, to murder, music has been linked to violent behavior throughout time and some types of music and instruments have even been said to drive people insane.
Below are 10 examples of the dangers of music:
The Glass Armonica Of Depression
The glass armonica (or harmonica) was invented by Benjamin Franklin and is basically an improved version of running your fingers around the rim of a wineglass. The instrument took off in popularity, with composers such as Beethoven, Strauss, and Mozart writing music for it. However, it soon began to acquire a <a href="http://news.bbc.co.uk/local/tees/hi/people_and_places/arts_and_culture/newsid_8356000/8356704.stm" target="_blank">dark reputation</a>, with rumors that it would drive the player insane. The German musicologist Johann Friedrich Rochlitz said, "The harmonica excessively stimulates the nerves, plunges the player into a <a href="http://books.google.ca/books?id=7g3yC_EI310C&pg=PT189&lpg=PT189&dq=The+harmonica+excessively+stimulates+the+nerves,+plunges+the+player+into+a+nagging+depression+and+hence+into+a+dark+and+melancholy+mood+that+is+apt+method+for+slow+self-annihilation.+If+you+are+suffering+from+any+kind+of+nervous+disorder,+you+should+not+play+it;+if+you+are+not+yet+ill+you+should+not+play+it;+if+you+are+feeling+melancholy+you+should+not+play+it.&source=bl&ots=_MahdCFO7z&sig=ia8wTHlh_zxF1B4DipHL7loqOwg&hl=en&sa=X&ei=6IVlUeHpNLKz4AOi4YGwBA&ved=0CFAQ6AEwBA" target="_blank">nagging depression</a> and hence into a dark and melancholy mood that is apt method for slow self-annihilation. If you are suffering from any kind of nervous disorder, you should not play it; if you are not yet ill you should not play it; if you are feeling melancholy you should not play it."
Scandinavian Black Metal
Black metal in Scandinavia is a terrifying thing, with many <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Early_Norwegian_black_metal_scene" target="_blank">crimes</a> linked to that scene. There was a rash of church burnings in Norway in the '90s, some of which were done by Varg Vikernes (who used a picture of one charred church for an EP cover), who is notorious for brutally murdering a former friend and bandmate, Euronymous. Euronymous is notorious on his own for taking pictures of his dead friend and allegedly making necklaces out of his skull and giving them to musicians that he deemed worthy — the whole thing is like the worst version of "Dem Bones" ever.
Beach Boys Music
Brian Wilson composed the song "Elements: Fire" for the album "Smile." The song was so eerie sounding that Wilson was unnerved by it. He got even more <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2012/01/13/living/brian-wilson-creativity" target="_blank">unnerved</a> when the building near the studio caught on fire and he found out that there had been a larger-than-average number of fires in L.A. at the time. He was afraid that he had accidentally tapped into some dark energy, and because of this and other reasons, "Smile" was later scrapped.
Frank Sinatra's "My Way" Killings
In the Philippines, there were a string of murders — known as the "<a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/07/world/asia/07karaoke.html?_r=1&" target="_blank">My Way Killings</a>" — of people who performed Frank Sinatra's "My Way" in an unsatisfactory manner during karaoke. It's <a href="http://www.ibtimes.com/karaoke-killings-bizarre-phenomenon-east-asia-781429" target="_blank">estimated</a> that a dozen people so far have been killed after performing the song. So if you're in the Philippines and think it would be fun to take in some karaoke: don't. Or at least, don't sing Rat Pack songs.
"Gloomy Sunday" was written in 1933 by a Hungarian composer named Rezso Seress. It has allegedly been <a href="http://www.phespirit.info/gloomysunday/article_01.htm" target="_blank">linked </a>to over 100 deaths over the years. Two people shot themselves after listening to it. A man requested the song in a nightclub and then also shot himself. A woman committed suicide and left a note requesting that the song be played at her funeral. Several people committed suicide while holding copies of the sheet music. Seress’s girlfriend — the catalyst for the creation of the song — committed suicide and was found with a piece of paper that said "Gloomy Sunday." It got so bad that the Budapest Police and the BBC both <a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/ptop/A26560361" target="_blank">banned</a> the song. When the BBC lifted the ban and released it as an instrumental, a woman was found dead in her apartment with the song playing. Finally, Seress himself committed suicide in 1968.
Johnny Cash's Prison Music
When Johnny Cash performed in San Quentin, the prisoners became so close to rioting that the guards had to draw their guns. The producer <a href="http://books.google.ca/books?id=DOIecLTkHaIC&pg=PA93&lpg=PA93&dq=johnny+cash,+san+quentin+concert,+riot&source=bl&ots=28T4We9xaH&sig=Q1v7fHmbZTt6wcxf-KgcqaMmXb8&hl=en&sa=X&ei=fmFkUcPfOMuO0QHsv4CoAw&ved=0CEsQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=johnny2C20quentin2C%20riot&f=false" target="_blank">said</a>, "All he had to do was say something. It would have been a huge riot, and Johnny and his family would've been dead out there."
Beatles 'White Album' & Charles Manson
Charles Manson thought up a whole <a href="http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/manson/mansonbeatles.html" target="_blank">ideology</a> based on the Beatles' "White Album," which led to the <a href="http://www.trutv.com/library/crime/serial_killers/notorious/manson/skelter_6.html" target="_blank">Tate-LaBianca murders</a>. "Helter Skelter" the song was also a Manson concept of an apocalyptic race war in which the blacks would rise up against the whites, but wouldn't be able to hold onto their power because of "innate inferiority." After which the Manson family would basically take over the world. Manson believed that the "White Album" was the Beatles speaking to him in code, and he also believed the Tate-LaBianca murders would get the race war started. They obviously didn't, and the Manson family instead went to prison.
Eric Satie's Vexing Music
Eric Satie's "Vexations" is about a minute and a half long… but it's supposed to be performed 840 times in a row. Most performances feature several pianists, but in 1970, pianist Peter Evans <a href="http://www.theglobeandmail.com/arts/books-and-media/review-the-incident-report-by-martha-baillie/article4292422/" target="_blank">attempted to play</a> the whole thing solo. He had to leave in the middle of the performance, and later <a href="http://www.users.waitrose.com/~chobbs/Bryars.html" target="_blank">wrote</a>, "I would not play this piece again. I felt each repetition slowly wearing my mind away. I had to stop. If I hadn't stopped I'd be a very different person today... People who play it do so at their own great peril." A member of the audience later said that Evans reported thinking evil thoughts and he saw animals and other things peering out at him from the score. This might have less to do with the music itself and more with the fact that he had been playing continuously for 15 hours.
The first two and last two tracks JLIAT's album, "Still Life #5: 6 Types Of Silence" can, under the right conditions, <a href="http://hypnos.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=HOS&Product_Code=co11&Category_Code=closeout" target="_blank">start electrical fires</a>. The album has been packaged with a <a href="http://www.discogs.com/Jliat-Still-Life-5-6-Types-Of-Silence/release/504652" target="_blank">disclaimer</a>.
East Coast -- West Coast Rap
Back in the 1990s, there was a <a href="https://sites.google.com/site/theevolutionofhiphop/east-coast-vs-west-coast" target="_blank">feud </a>between artists and fans of West Coast hip-hop, and artists and fans of East Coast hip-hop. Initially it was characterized by diss tracks and some brawling, but escalated into someone <a href="http://www.trutv.com/library/crime/notorious_murders/celebrity/shakur_BIG/2a.html" target="_blank">shooting and robbing</a> Tupac, who later died of his injuries. Six months later, The Notorious B.I.G. was shot and killed in California. Both murders remain unsolved.