We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
I looked up atonal music and found very good explanations and videos of examples with discussion about what they were. I understood what they said but did not understand why it matters or why anyone should care. If you like a song do you really care what the writer or musician was thinking?
I worked in computers all my life. I programmed them and many languages over that long career. My favorite programming language is machine language which is the lowest level of language and it is inherent in the machine you are working on. It is determined by the actual structure of the CPU and supporting control components. I also was very fond of Fortran, an older language, a few levels of distance removed from machine language and a language written to support complex math.
If I took the time to explain them both my dissertation would resemble the explanation on tonal vs atonal music and you would in the end by yelling "who cares, all that matters is does the program work or not".
But... but I would stutter, machine language is the original programming language and everything is based on it even the newest most powerful language is based on machine language... And at some point you would stop listening to me. Too much inside baseball. You have to be a nerd to care. All the non-nerds care about is "does it work?"
I am a non-nerd when it comes to music. I like what I like and could care less about what I don't like. However, where this tonal vs atonal would matter would be "IF" it could determine what would be good/popular/well liked music. BUT clearly it cannot.
Let me tell you about the problems and the power in machine language programming... It will put you to sleep.
OK. After thinking about it more my somewhat rash reply was not what I intended. I was trying to be funny. I actually never heard of atonal and it was interesting to discover it in your post. Thank you for that. I simply don't know what it means to me and I assume if I were a musician or studied music this would be more interesting and useful to me. Perhaps over time I will understand it better.
Now about that machine language. May favorite machine language instruction was 000100000010000. It's a little easier to visualize in octal; 04020. Follow me for more machine language hints.