All talk of negative harmony, such as What is the correct process for deriving the 'mirror' or 'negative' harmony of a progression? deals with transposing the chords according to the rules of negative harmony.

Does this mean that the melody also needs to be transposed to its negative harmony equivalent? I can see a lot of minor seconds if I don't but perhaps that is part of negative harmony's charm?


1 Answer 1


Melody is part of the harmony so I would expect it to be part of the 'negative' harmony.

A simple example...

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So first we get the tonic inverted to a minor subdominant and the dominant inverts to a minor subdominant.

The interesting thing regarding melody is that the treble and bass parts switch roles.

I suppose if you wanted the original melody part to remain in the treble, you could transpose it into the octave above all the other voices.

At least by this example, melodically the ascending major line DO RE MI in the negative becomes the descending minor line SOL FA ME.

  • I was wondering about that as well. Major to minor, plagal to plagal, ascending to descending. All rules of negative harmony?
    – empty
    Jul 24, 2019 at 22:03
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    Is the whole negative harmony thing more than a YouTube hype? And was it devised as an analytic tool or as a composition method? Jul 24, 2019 at 22:18
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    I think the deep dive is to read about harmonic dualism, see this post: music.stackexchange.com/questions/56346. Personally, I've not taken the dive. I'm only applying what I've read in encyclopedia type summaries. Jul 25, 2019 at 13:09

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