Augmented Fourth, or Diminished Fifth

Tritone, also known as an augmented fourth or diminished fifth, refers to a musical interval spanning three whole tones or six semitones. It is regarded as one of the most dissonant and unstable intervals in Western music.

The tritone divides the octave into two equal parts, creating tension and a sense of unease. It is often described as having a "clashing" or "unresolved" sound. In medieval and Renaissance music, the tritone was considered forbidden and was referred to as the "diabolus in musica" (the devil in music).

The tritone's unique sound and dissonance have made it a prominent feature in various musical styles and genres, including classical, jazz, and rock. Composers and musicians have used the tritone to evoke suspense, instability, and tension in their compositions.

In functional harmony, the tritone is commonly found in dominant seventh chords. Its resolution to a consonant interval, such as a major third or a perfect fifth, creates a sense of resolution and harmonic stability.

The tritone's importance extends beyond its dissonance and harmonic function. It has also played a significant role in the development of music theory and composition techniques. Composers throughout history have explored its use and manipulation to create unique and innovative musical ideas.

Example of Tritone

What is a Tritone? Tritone Explained in 2 Minutes (Music Theory)