Monday, April 4, 2011

New Poll: ASMR and Chills: the Same Phenomenon?

So the old poll’s results were published the other day. Now it’s time for the new poll, and the topic this time I think is quite fitting: Is ASMR and chills the same phenomenon?

This has been a topic of conversation that has arisen over the past while, with some discussion over it, and I thought it would make for an excellent, interesting poll.

So what are the options in this poll?

Yes, they are the same thing.

Vote for this if you are positively certain that ASMR and chills/frisson are indeed the same thing.

It’s possible that they might be related in some way.

This is if you think that there might be some subtle differences, but the effects that both phenomena have on the body are similar – perhaps with different chemical releases in the brain and such, as well as other external, physical “symptoms”, like Goosebumps. So in other words, they’re different, but in some ways… similar; perhaps connected in some fashion.

No, they are different things.

This is if you are positive that the two things are not the same. You’re not quite sure why, but there it is.

No, chills relates to music only.

Most of the studies out there based on chills, or frisson, have focused on music. This has led some to believe that frisson is associated only with music, and not ASMR. Some of the chief triggers for ASMR include stimulating the senses: sound, sight, touch, and even in some cases, smell; it doesn’t always, or ever, involve music.


Please note that I reserve the right to change the poll options if needs be. Each person may only vote once. Poll ends on the 4th of July, 2011.


  1. I can't even believe I have found this info!! I thought I was the only one!!...AND there are names for it! I have never told anyone...mosty because it is hard to put it into words... Thank you for this reading material.

  2. So, until I first read about AMSR (maybe half hour ago) I thought what I was experiencing was chills, I mean thats what people told me it was, But it much more than that I'm starting to believe. I don't just get chills with music/ movies/ tv I get waves of tingles. They don't always start on my head but by the time they are past they will have gone over my head. Often I moved to tears (sometimes because of what I associate the music or scene with or sometimes just from watching something once randomly. Some times they are happy tears and sometimes they are sad, but they always feel good. I get so emotional all of a sudden I'm always afraid people are going to think I'm losing it, or that I'm hysterical. I've also been told by people, and believed at times myself, that I am an indigo child.

  3. Ok, so it seems the "experts" want to describe frisson as being a moment of excitement where ASMR is relaxing. They draw a difference as if frisson is a stimulant and a brief one at that and ASMR is a long slow relaxant. But in response I offer Massive Attack's "Teardrop" video. This video creates frisson/asmr for me every time and yes I see them as the same thing! I don't get energy so much from this song as I get relaxed and even pleasurably sleepy, oh and tingly, all over through the whole body and a feeling of peace and euphoria. Not a bad little mix if it's just the "chills". But it's more. Frisson is one type of asmr despite what most asmr "experts" say. They have yet to introduce one plausible difference between the two. As asmr has endless triggers isn't it possible that music is one? Of course. I think they exclude music because it's only the most common and fastest way to those tingles. Those who get there from whispering or watching methodical activity or whatever feel they are special and must put themselves in a higher more special category. Every community has it's elletists. Well, I've gotten tingly peacefulness from quiet buildings, nature, hair-cuts, whispering but mostly and most powerfully from music. It's all the same feeling but more intense with music, so I guess that makes frisson better if there is such a difference. Anyways, here's "Teardrop", enjoy all you frisson/asmr tingleheads !

  4. I don't see them as the same.

    Mostly because I experience both, and experience them differently.

    ASMR I primarily get from ambient sounds and voices. Never from music. Music gives me chills occasionally.

    The ASMR feeling is more tingly and tight. There's a pressure involved. It concentrates on my brain, then shoots down my spine. When it hits hard it makes me just want to close my eyes and disappear into the feeling.

    Chills is a different thing. There is still a tingle, but it doesn't feel the same. It flows over my body in waves. Gives me a shiver. I never feel the drift off feeling though.

    Now, this is just me. Who knows what other people feel. But for me, they are very different experiences.

  5. Music and Emotions

    The most difficult problem in answering the question of how music creates emotions is likely to be the fact that assignments of musical elements and emotions can never be defined clearly. The solution of this problem is the Theory of Musical Equilibration. It says that music can't convey any emotion at all, but merely volitional processes, the music listener identifies with. Then in the process of identifying the volitional processes are colored with emotions. The same happens when we watch an exciting film and identify with the volitional processes of our favorite figures. Here, too, just the process of identification generates emotions.

    An example: If you perceive a major chord, you normally identify with the will "Yes, I want to...". The experience of listening to a minor chord can be compared to the message conveyed when someone says, "No more." If someone were to say these words slowly and quietly, they would create the impression of being sad, whereas if they were to scream it quickly and loudly, they would be come across as furious. This distinction also applies for the emotional character of a minor chord: if a minor harmony is repeated faster and at greater volume, its sad nature appears to have suddenly turned into fury.

    Because this detour of emotions via volitional processes was not detected, also all music psychological and neurological experiments, to answer the question of the origin of the emotions in the music, failed.

    But how music can convey volitional processes? These volitional processes have something to do with the phenomena which early music theorists called "lead", "leading tone" or "striving effects". If we reverse this musical phenomena in imagination into its opposite (not the sound wants to change - but the listener identifies with a will not to change the sound) we have found the contents of will, the music listener identifies with. In practice, everything becomes a bit more complicated, so that even more sophisticated volitional processes can be represented musically.

    Further information is available via the free download of the e-book "Music and Emotion - Research on the Theory of Musical Equilibration:

    or on the online journal EUNOMIOS:

    Enjoy reading

    Bernd Willimek, music theorist


If you’ve found this post helpful or humorous, why not bookmark it right now? You can do this by using the ‘share it’ buttons, as well as the new blogger share buttons at the bottom of the post. Please feel free to share this article with others, but do not plagiarise. All posts on this blog including this one, are copyrighted.

You may also leave a comment as well.

Bookmarking and commenting only takes a little time, and you can also consider subscribing to my RSS feed for more!

I apologise if you are having trouble leaving a comment. Sometimes the comment system doesn't accept comments. I'm looking in to this right now, and hopefully can find a fix soon. There are several potentional reasons why this may be happening to some people, and one of them points in the direction of a recent Blogger update.

This is the main reason why I am unable to respond to comments left on the blog for the time being, but rest assured that I do read and approve comments that make it through. If you really need to get a hold of me, then visit my contact page in the sidebar to the right. Thanks.

Custom Search

Site Updates

These are just mini-updates that I was too lazy or busy to make a post for. They also list changes or additions that have been made to the blog, for interest's sake and to follow how the blog is developing.

- Enabled mobile layout for blog.

- Updated hotspots page.

- Work in progress on new page.

Full list here.

Popular Posts


ASMR (179) ASMR Group (50) facebook (47) tingling (41) sound (38) video (27) audio (25) YouTube (21) ASMR Research and Support (20) The Unnamed Feeling (19) poll (19) sensation (19) experience (18) feeling (18) AIE (17) Tingle Triggers (15) ecstacy (14) ASMR Network (13) TV (12) tingles (12) ASMR team (11) music (11) radio (10) community (9) trigger (9) UNF (8) theory (8) ASMR forum (7) Type B (7) community update (7) theories (7) Type A (6) video games (6) App (5) asmer (5) Society of Sensationalists (4) Wikipedia (4) narcolepsy (4) trial (4) ASMR Radio (3) International ASMR Day (3) Outreach Agent (3) Twitter (3) hypnosis (3) movies (3) polls (3) research (3) steadyhealth (3) ASMR Island (2) Andrew Johnson (2) HubPages (2) Hug Your Brain Day (2) Insomnia (2) Kickstarter (2) Reddit (2) cartoons (2) chills (2) contest (2) dopamine (2) experiments (2) hair growth (2) hair loss (2) iPhone (2) medical (2) mobile (2) pain (2) scientific (2) senses (2) side effects (2) social networking (2) spiritual (2) trigger videos (2) tumblr (2) AIHO (1) AIOEU (1) ASMR TV (1) Amygdala Clicking (1) Indigo Children (1) Librivox (1) MP3s (1) (1) Skype (1) The ASMR Project (1) blog (1) digital media (1) eBook (1) emotions (1) empathy (1) external (1) funding (1) gibberish (1) goosebumps (1) haircut (1) haptics (1) head (1) incidental trigger (1) informercials (1) intentional triggers (1) internal (1) interview (1) itches (1) milestone (1) news (1) paranormal (1) phenomenon (1) playlist (1) podcast (1) religion (1) roleplay (1) scalp (1) sign language (1) sixth sense (1) speech (1) stress (1) stroking (1) survey (1) synaesthesia (1) tongues (1) vessel (1)