Album Listening Really Can Boost Your Mood, Says U.K. Study for National Album Day

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Listening to a full music album is one of the best ways to de-stress -- more so than gardening, exercising or taking a nap, according to new research in the U.K.

In the study conducted by London research agency Fly Research in August, 82.9% of 2,019 adults surveyed agreed that listening to albums helps them relax. And listening to an album was the third most popular activity for improving mood and mental well-being, behind comfort-eating and reading, the number-one mood-booster.

The research was specially commissioned for the second annual National Album Day in the U.K. on Oct. 12 -- where the theme is #Don'tSkip, encouraging fans to listen to albums in full -- so take that with a grain of salt. Organized jointly by industry body BPI and the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA), the event champions the album format, with this year's artist partners including Lewis Capaldi, Mahalia and Mark Ronson.

The study also comes ahead of World Mental Health day on Oct. 10.

Elsewhere in the report, nearly 60% of people agreed that listening to albums is "to listen to the artist's music in the way that they intended." Nearly half of people agreed that listening to albums is "more satisfying than listening to radio," but albums only narrowly beat playlists as the most satisfying form of listening for respondents.

Nearly half of people also agreed that "listening to albums is the best way to connect with an artist and their music."

"National Album Day is fundamentally a celebration of the cultural impact of the album," said ERA CEO Kim Bayley. "What is striking about this research is it’s a potent reminder that album listening can also have psychological benefits too. We tend to regard listening to music purely as entertainment, but at a time when there are real concerns about stress levels and mental health, this research indicates that British music fans are effectively self-medicating with their favourite albums."


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