We've all turned to melancholy music to make us feel better at some point in our lives, but why does doubling down on the sadness help drag us out of the mire?
A new study sheds light on what's going on inside our brains when we match our music to our feels, and it looks like sad music can be enjoyable - rather than simply depressing - because it triggers positive memories that can help to lift our mood.
Psychologist Adrian North from Curtin University in Australia says there are two groups of possible explanations for why we enjoy listening to sad music like this: one from social psychology, and one from cognitive neuroscience.
In terms of social psychology, one way of thinking about this is that we feel better about ourselves if we focus on someone who's doing even worse, a well-known process known as downward social comparison. Everything's going to be okay, because this person is having an even worse day than you are.
Another hypothesis from social psychology is that people like to listen to music that mirrors the tone of their current life circumstances – the songs act as a sort of tuning fork for our own situations, and they resonate with us.