More rock Easter eggs: from mysterious messages to calls to wash your hands and do your homework

Continuing the series (1, 2, 3) articles about surprises hidden in a variety of musical recordings. Last time we started talking about messages, hidden hints and encrypted images.

Today we will talk about messages that were directly addressed to listeners.

A photo Hello I’m Nik / Unsplash

The Devil’s Trill

By the time John Lennon declaredthat The Beatles can surpass Jesus in popularity, and the Rolling Stones “admitted”In“ sympathy for the devil ”(that’s what the first track from the Beggars Banquet album is called), preachers have long branded rock and roll as a deeply vicious genre. Many believers accused the musicians of adding satanic messages to the songs, which supposedly can be heard during reverse reproduction. At different times, such messages “were discovered»By Led Zeppelin, Styx and other popular bands.

Often such “hidden messages” appear on records only because the brain looking for patterns in all incoming information – especially if a person is set to find these patterns. In addition, the perception of the recording in reverse playback is also associated with the features of the song language. As shown OddityArchive video blogger experimentThe chanted “and” is similar to the second syllable “Satan”. So literally any song where the word following the “and” contains the sound “s” may seem like a hymn to the dark lord (Frank Sinatra’s example, which supposedly pronounces “Hey! I’ll sue Satan! ” in the song Summer Wind).

Although the rockers themselves denied trying to write something down and introduce it into the minds of the masses, opponents had little faith in their statements. Vocalist of Judas Priest who answered the court on charges of incitement to suicide, noticed“If we could influence the listeners, we would rather order them to buy more records.”

Some ensembles tried to appeal to opponents in a humorous manner. This is what the British band Electric Light Orchestra did – they faced the anger of the fundamentalists over the song Eldorado. The musicians said that it was “ahupech” (“skcollob”), and they really added a secret message to their next record. In the composition “Fire on High” during reverse playback, the words “Music can be reversed, but time not. Turn around. Turn around. Turn around. “

The group went even further in an album with the telling name Secret Messages. On its cover was a warning that the record contained “inverted secret messages,” and that was true. Here is a call to plant a tree, and warnings in the style of “Attention, you are listening to the album backwards”, and simple thanks to the audience. A complete list of “secret messages” cannot be given – because of the difficult fate, the record never saw the light in the form in which the authors intended it.

Do good all over the earth

Other musicians, following Electric Light Orchestra, also decided to convey to the audience “secret good advice” – someone is clearly a joke, and someone, possibly, seriously. For example, Christian rock band Petra inserted a rhetorical question into the song Judas ’Kiss:“ Why are you looking for the devil when you should look for the Lord? ”

Mindless Self Indulgence technopunk hardcore artists in Backmaskwarning! directly call to put the track backwards. If you ignore the following insults and follow the instructions, some tips await youagainst which it is difficult to object: to respect parents, maintain order in the room, do homework and eat more vegetables.

Linkin Park did the same in their song Announcement Service Public. Its name should serve as a hint, because the expression “public service announcement” means social advertising and socially useful information. With reverse playback, the idea becomes clear – musicians decided to remind fans need to brush their teeth and wash their hands.

Perhaps the most moving message left the band Franz Ferdinand in the composition of Michael. In the middle of the song, the vocalist encourages listener to call mother because she is worried. According to the fan version, these words are addressed bassist Franz Ferdinand, who was worried about family relationships at the time of recording. However, he himself did not know about the secret record and subsequently considered it simply a positive message. But what you definitely don’t expect to hear on a rock album is the Big Mac recipe. Remember the advertisement for “two meat grilled cutlets”? American pop grunge band L7 immortalized English version of this speech in Boys In Black. Whether this story has a commercial background remains unknown.

Bonus fact for those who have read to the end

In fact, rock music can actually be used to send secret messages. It’s not about hypnotic effects on listeners, but about the variety steganography – technology of secret data transmission while hiding the very fact of such a transfer.

In 2019, a group of engineers from the Higher Technical School in Zurich handed over data, “hiding” them in the sound spectrum of a rock composition. For this purpose, they used a frequency masking technique: information was encoded using OFDM. To engineers managed to achieve transmission speeds of 300-400 bps at a distance of 24 meters.

A photo Emily rudolph / Unsplash

The modification of the track had practically no effect on the sound quality – only a barely visible hiss was added. Field tests on volunteers showed that it is very difficult to notice the difference between the changed and the original melody. During the experiment, they used the song “And the cradle will rock»The Van Halen group. The choice of composition is due to the fact that it is not yet possible to apply technology outside of rock music. Only she manages to effectively mask the added static noise. The developers plan to correct the situation in the future and encode data in other songs.

But while for the new technology they have already come up with potential applications – in clubs, cafes and restaurants. Visitors will be able to quickly receive a password from the local Wi-Fi network: it will be enough for the client’s smartphone to listen to music playing in the institution.

Additional reading from our “Hi-Fi World”:

What audiohooks were hidden in the pre-gap on the Audio CD
We continue to talk about gifts for attentive listeners
Concert for a city with an orchestra: who and why records the sounds of everyday life
From computer games to secret messages: discuss Easter eggs in vinyl releases
“Hear” the cosmos: from dark matter to comet Churyumov – Gerasimenko

Weekend Reading:

  • Podcasts, sunset era FM radio stations and meditation applications
  • Sound Health Effects – From Noise Hygiene to Good Sleep and GTD
  • Audio gadgets – from Soviet car radios to noise-canceling plugs

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