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 It’s hard for anyone to say what music looks like, but a new mathematical approach sees classical music as cone-shaped and jazz as pyramid-like

This is an image of the space of three-note chord types. The orange spheres represent the major and minor

You can use these geometrical spaces to provide ways of visualizing musical pieces,” Tymoczko told LiveScience. “These spaces give us a much better and comprehensive picture of the space of all possible chords.”

The connections between math and music are many, from the unproven Mozart effect (the idea that playing Mozart’s music to children might improve their mathematical abilities) to the music of the spheres (the ancient belief that proportions in the movements of the planets could be viewed as a form of music). Now scientists have created a mathematical system for understanding music

The team designed a geometrical technique for mapping out music in coordinate space. For music made of chords containing two notes, all musical possibilities take the shape of a Möbius strip, which basically looks like a twisted rubber band

The team found that the shape of possibilities using three-note chords is a three-dimensional ice cream cone, where types of chords, such as major chords and minor chords, are unique points on the cone.