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Envelope reconstruction of speech and music highlights stronger tracking of speech at low frequencies.


ABSTRACT: The human brain tracks amplitude fluctuations of both speech and music, which reflects acoustic processing in addition to the encoding of higher-order features and one's cognitive state. Comparing neural tracking of speech and music envelopes can elucidate stimulus-general mechanisms, but direct comparisons are confounded by differences in their envelope spectra. Here, we use a novel method of frequency-constrained reconstruction of stimulus envelopes using EEG recorded during passive listening. We expected to see music reconstruction match speech in a narrow range of frequencies, but instead we found that speech was reconstructed better than music for all frequencies we examined. Additionally, models trained on all stimulus types performed as well or better than the stimulus-specific models at higher modulation frequencies, suggesting a common neural mechanism for tracking speech and music. However, speech envelope tracking at low frequencies, below 1 Hz, was associated with increased weighting over parietal channels, which was not present for the other stimuli. Our results highlight the importance of low-frequency speech tracking and suggest an origin from speech-specific processing in the brain.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC8480853 | BioStudies |

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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