Study finds metalheads amongst happiest music fans, clearly didn't poll our Facebook page

Happy metal fans
(Image credit: Stefan M. Prager/Redferns)

What’s that R.E.M song called again... Shiny Happy Metal People? Okay, those aren't the real lyrics, but according to a new study they probably should be. New research courtesy of online marketplace (no, we're not sure why they're researching this, either) has found that metal is home to music's second happiest fan base, thanks to the high level of positivity the community shows online. 

The rigorous and absolutely definitely scientifically-sound research was compiled through the analysis of more than two million Reddit comments from the subreddits of 27 different music genres. The number of times positive words were used within the subreddits was calculated to reveal the hierarchy of fan base happiness, revealing that jazz listeners are the most positive, followed by metallers. At the more negative end of the spectrum were drill, grime, and drum and bass fans.

So here’s the stats: metal fans boasted one of the biggest Reddit communities with 1,388,473 members, and averaged 62 positive words per 100 comments. Throughout the community’s 57,837 total comments, 35,737 positive words were used. 

To uncover the correlation between certain genre types and the happiness of their fans, asked WeCure’s psychologist, Şirin Atçeken for the answers, who explained: “It is no secret that music affects your mental health, but it may surprise you that it is claimed that most jazz and metal fans are the happiest amongst music lovers. And this is for several reasons.”

“Jazz and metal are emotive and allow us to express our emotions whilst we listen to the music, but it’s two extremes. Metal affects us and is a natural anger management tool. It allows us to tap into our anger sensors, and actively address them, helping to manage these negative emotions.”

“People feel that their anger is matched to the music when listening to metal, and therefore find it easier to process it. Metal formulates a safe, and healthy space for this to happen. In some cases, metal also combats loneliness and makes us feel less alone in these emotions, allowing the listener to accept them.”

So there you have it, next time you're feeling a little uneasy, listen to some metal. Doctor's orders.

To read more about OnBuy's research and for the full list of music genres, find it over on their blog.

Liz Scarlett

Liz works on keeping the Louder sites up to date with the latest news from the world of rock and metal. Prior to joining Louder as a full time staff writer, she completed a Diploma with the National Council for the Training of Journalists and received a First Class Honours Degree in Popular Music Journalism. She enjoys writing about anything from neo-glam rock to stoner, doom and progressive metal, and loves celebrating women in music.