Backmasking is a recording technique which is recorded backwards that is meant to be played forward. It is a deliberate process, whereas a message found in the reversal may be unintentional. It was popularized by the Beatles, who used backward vocals on their 1966 album Revolver. Since then, artists have used back masking for artistic, comedic, and satiric effect, on both digital and analog recordings. It has also been used to censor words for clean versions of songs. The most controversial discussion of backmasking would be during the 1980s when Christian groups claimed that certain rock groups used backmasking to promote satanism.
Although we may not hear it when the song is played forward, if we were to play it backwards, we can get a pretty clear hearing of it. Now you may wonder, why care if you cannot hear it by playing it forward? The reason why it is such a controversial topic today is because it is considered to be a type of subliminal message. Subliminal messages pass through the human mind consciously but affects certain parts of the subconscious mind. This can negatively or positively influence subsequent later thoughts, behaviors, actions, attitudes, value and belief systems. Its like tricking us into thinking a certain way that other people want us to think. There are many songs that are out there, particularly rock groups, that are under criticism for backmasking such as “Highway to Hell” and “Another one bites the Dust”.
Many people have uploaded videos on Youtube.com of songs played backwards with their interpretations of what the backward vocals are saying. Now could these musicians be spreading subliminal messages through their music? That is definitely a possibility. In my opinion, if you find out that one of your favorite songs is under criticism for backmasking, you should listen to it backwards to try to find out if the musician is trying to trick you into thinking a certain way.
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