The movie Soylent Green was released in 1973 and offers a dystopian view of the future, set in our current year, 2022. (Spoilers ahead) In Soylent Green’s vision of 2022, the world is overpopulated with a permanent heat wave from greenhouse gases. The Soylent company controls the food supply and they start producing a “miracle food” that they claim is made from plankton but as Charlton Heston discovers, it’s really made from human beings. In other words things get so bad by 2022 that cannibalism becomes the order of the day. As Tony Sokol points out in Den of Geek, Soylent Green did anticipate some of the darker features of our current world: face coverings, meat substitutes, climate change. Cannibalism, though? I don’t know, we’re not quite there yet but who knows? Anyway, in our timeline 2022 is already starting off with great psychedelia. All of the tracks in this episode have been released in the last month.
00:00 Turn Me On Dead Man – Intro 00:19 Solilians – Old Schmeckled Hen 06:13 Lamp of the Universe – Return as Light 10:49 Clyde Von Klaus – Concede 13:40 Turn Me On Dead Man – Break 15:12 Ogua – Waves 24:03 Waylon Thornton – Blown Princes 26:11 Barbican Estate – The Divine Image 31:01 Elephant Stone – La fusée du chagrin 34:40 Los Árboles – Bebe Jesús 38:55 Thee Tabs – Carrier Pigeons 41:27 Parker Sprout – Milk in the Sun 44:02 Monte Meteoro – Contra 50:41 Aeon – Five 53:23 io audio recordings – Awaiting The Elliptical Drift
I’ve already posted my “best of 2021” lists and podcasts. As 2021 comes to an end, I’m including a couple of recordings that made on my “best of” list.
00:00 Turn Me On Dead Man – Intro 00:25 White Manna – Light Cones 06:04 The Myrrs – Buggy Chawnker 08:03 Dislocated Flowers – Renaissance Three Two Zero 14:00 Magoodin – Prisma 16:20 Melt Plastic Group – The Birdman Explodes 21:33 StarBath – StarBath Jam 1 27:54 ST 37 – Over and Over Again 33:08 Den Osynliga Manteln – Vortexlöpare 39:17 Moshi Moshi and the Moist Boys – Fluorescent Eye Part 1 43:03 Sonic Delays – Coast 46:44 Frozen Planet…. 1969 – Diamond Dust
As we enter the season of advent, Reality Sandwich outlines the shamanic origins of Christmas. One type of mushroom, Amanita muscaria, has some interesting similarities to Christmas imagery. In our times mushrooms are “finally having a moment,” according to Lucy Jones in The Guardian, and illustrator Brian Blomerth celebrates the history of mushroom lore in a new book.
A number of states (Florida and California among them), as well as the city of Toronto, are discussing or moving forward with legislation to decriminalize psychedelics. The website MDLinx cites “breaking the psychedelic ceiling” as one of the top medical breakthroughs of 2021. Discussions at the Wonderland psychedelic conference were optimistic that psychedelics are to be the next big development in mental health treatment, and the Australian ABC podcast All in the Mind devoted a recent episode to “Psychedelics for mental illness.” Even though barriers against using psychedelics for treating mental health disorders are still substantial, the market for these drugs could be huge. Some worry, however, that if legal psychedelics are dominated by big pharma, it could enrich large corporations rather than a broader community benefitting from these developments.
The music in this episode ranges from psychfolk to lo-fi garage to experimental psych and concludes with an extended jam by Wizard Beast. One of my standard questions for the artists is “What record changed your life?” I’ve been impressed with the wide range of influences the artists cite, but The Velvet Underground and Nico gets mentioned quite often. Here it takes on new meaning through the lens of “Cold Equations”.
00:00 Turn Me On Dead Man – Intro 00:38 Thee U.F.O. – Putrefied Block 03:46 Pancho and the Wizards – Dog With two Masters 07:02 Meatbodies – Reach For The Sun 13:33 Cheval Sombre – Althea 21:14 The Yellow Blackness – Gift of Illusion 24:37 Constant Smiles – Run To Stay 27:07 Sons of Zoku – Lovers Trance 34:40 Anti-Corn League – Let Me Begin 37:25 Alice Tambourine Lover – Forse Non Sei Tu 41:54 Wizard Beast – Pathways of the Magical Mind part 1
It’s interesting to reflect on how the renewed interest in psychedelics started. In the 1990s researchers at Johns Hopkins wanted to study the mental health benefits of psilocybin. Psychedelics were so stigmatized at that point, however, that they weren’t sure the FDA or even their own institution would approve the research. They managed to get approval for their research efforts and published their positive results in 2006, and the “psychedelic renaissance” has gained momentum since then.
A growing number of studies have shown the mental health benefits of psychedelics, and this has become an area of intenseinterest. Veterans are a group that has shown great interest in these studies, as psychedelics have been demonstrated to be effective in treating PTSD. Among others, veterans have been given new hope by these developments, and the New York Times points out that “Veterans Have Become Unlikely Lobbyists in Push to Legalize Psychedelic Drugs”. Some health insurance providers are starting to cover psychedelic mental health treatments, and private companies are now competing to develop treatment regimens to tap into this potentially huge market.
One interesting note emerged from a recent study where some attendees of an ayahuasca retreat were given placebos. The people who took placebos reported benefits, such as lower anxiety and depression, and using the measures devised by the researchers, these benefits were statistically similar to the attendees who actually took ayahuasca. The researchers acknowledged that there may have been mitigating factors in their study, but it remains a subject for future research.
The optimism about psychedelics is being felt in a variety of unlikely places. Benzinga writes about parenting aided by microdosing psychedelics in the article “Moms on mushrooms“. House Beautiful suggests that the popularity of decorating home decor items with mushrooms is “a side effect of—or even a sly wink to—the recent legalization of magic mushrooms in some parts of the world.” Big Think discusses research showing that psychedelics can change how users see the universe, leading individuals to adopt a more transcendental outlook.
More celebrities continue to make public their psychedelic experiences. I mentioned Will Smith in my previous podcast, but this time around more members of the family join in the discussion. Jada Pinkett Smith and their son, Jaden Smith, shared their psychedelic stories on Jada’s talk show, Red Table Talk. Mike Tyson has become a rather unlikely advocate for psychedelics, as he has been open about his life-changing experiences with 5-MeO-DMT, which is the venom of the Bufo Alvarius toad. L.A. Weekly is calling him the “New Face of Psychedelic Healing.”
While the music in this episode of Turn Me On, Dead Man is psychedelic, the theme is not. Today is November 22, 2021, which is the 59th anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy. A couple of days ago I made my regular trip to Joe’s Record Paradise and found a still-sealed LP copy of Years of Lightning, Day of Drums, a celebration of JFK’s life as a counter to the shock of his assassination. You can draw a direct line from the JFK assassination to our current polarized and conspiracy-theory-driven political environment, but I’ll leave that there for the time being. Right now I just want to enjoy the breadth and depth of current psychedelia.
00:20 Dope Smoker – NASDAQ 05:17 Electric Eye – Den Atmosfaeriske Elven 11:12 Bard’s Flying Vessel – Cut In Half 15:57 The Violet Mindfield – Stranger In The Mirror 18:50 Exnovios – Un Nuevo Día 22:10 Dead Horse One – Nevermore 25:22 Dead Otter – Eye Elevator 31:34 Yokujitsu – Yawarakai Tejou 37:27 Hanford Flyover – Golden 42:10 Kuunatic – Para Bennyà 48:28 Some Pills For Ayala – Space Octopus
There’s been a lot of discussion recently about decriminalization or legalization of various kinds of drugs, including psychedelics. The podcast “The Argument” held a panel discussion on this topic in the episode “The World’s View on Drugs Is Changing. Which Side Are You On?” Oregon was among the first to experiment with decriminalization of drugs, but according to the website Governing, this has not resulted in connecting people with treatment. They point out, however, that COVID-19 may have impeded these efforts.
The biggest news in psychedelic music is that Earthless has announced that they will be touring this winter. Levitation (formerly Austin Psych Fest) will take place this week in Austin. And this episode of Turn Me On, Dead Man features several new psychedelic tracks, starting with the Altered Hours. The Irish Times praised their latest album, stating that they “inject doomed Irish romanticism into psychedelic rock.”
00:00 Turn Me On Dead Man – Intro 00:28 The Altered Hours – Radiant Wound 04:23 Strawberry Sleepover – For Tomorrow 08:05 Halo Noose – Journey to the Sun 12:15 Turn Me On Dead Man – Break 14:19 Chainsaw Rainbow – blonde with dark roots 17:57 Sly Fungi – Panspermia 23:12 The Squarevoyants – Motor Psychos (Ride) 25:02 The Wizard – The Wicked Messenger 27:52 American Cream Band – New Gods FM 31:47 Wah Wah Wah – Wormhole 36:10 Speck – The Metz Sessions
We are living in a time where we’re rethinking “forever wars” and that includes the war on drugs. Legalization/decriminalization drives, particularly for psychedelics, are underway in several cities and states across the US. Psychedelics are also under serious study for their mental health benefits. Alongside these developments is a resurgence of psychedelic music. The music featured in this episode comes from the US, Europe (Fairyport Convent from Poland and The Spacelords from Germany) and Latin America (Los Tabanos Experience from Chile and Khan Khan from Mexico). This episode opens with the Burning Balloons, a collaboration between Ben Bachman (High Tiny Hairs, Fuck Knights) from Minnesota and Raul Romero (The Flashback V, Psiconautes, Lola) from Barcelona.
04:22 The Burning Balloons – Drained 10:49 Fairyport Convent – Partizan Underground 17:09 Dark Fog – Floor Ceiling 22:53 Babe Ruthless – Aqua Cola 22:53 Los Tabanos Experience – The Wooden Curse 41:03 Evolfo – Zuma Loop 27:19 Khan Khan – Nubes de Mayo 27:19 Reality Cult – Close My Doors 41:03 The Electric Myrrs – Salvation (4 Miles) 41:03 The Spacelords – Liquid Sun remix
A lot of people have experienced loss in the last year. Sometimes music can help in difficult times–old favorites and new favorites. In this episode I’m going to focus on new tracks by some of the leading voices of current psychedelia (and garage rock, too) released on some of the most prominent indie labels. This episode more than most demonstrates how we’re in a psychedelic renaissance.
01:18 Meatbodies – Reach For The Sunn 06:09 Night Beats – Shadow 09:04 Goat – Queen of the Underground 14:59 New Candys – Begin Again 20:00 Ty Segall – Pictures 24:32 Acid Mothers Temple – Free Your Infinity Desire 32:09 Cosmic Dead – Crater Creator 36:25 King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard – Butterfly 3000 39:12 Darkside – Narrow Road 43:41 Wavves – Hideaway 47:31 Six Organs of Admittance – All That They Left You 53:51 King Buffalo – Burning
A look at some of the reissues that have come out recently. The tracks in this episode come from every decade since the 1970s, but have been reissued in some form this year. Breaks come from the wonderfully awful 1976 short film Joy Ride about the dangers of trying to be a “hot shot” by stealing cars and trying to outrun the police. It’s all innocent fun until the inevitable crash.
00:00 Turn Me On Dead Man – Intro 01:25 Dead Meadow – I’m Gone 05:21 Goat – Alarms 08:25 Blair1523 – Fantasy of Folk 11:25 The Mushroom Club – Heroin Picnic 17:53 Lilys – Ginger 23:12 Foot – Rupert Turdoch 26:55 Views – Say It! 31:18 Black Rainbows – Hawkdope 40:21 Acid Reich – Revenge of Tim Boo Ba 48:29 Brant Bjork – Low Desert Punk 53:12 Guru Guru – Stone In
This episode of Turn Me On, Dead Man features several recent psychedelic releases. All released in 2021 except Davi Rodriguez di Lima’s Fantasma, which is from 2020. The breaks in this episode come from the educational (maybe?) film What’s The Big Hurry? This 1974 short film was the sort of car crash gore movie they used to show in driver’s ed, only in this film the accidents are audio only. The visuals in What’s The Big Hurry? show the process of dismantling wrecked cars in a salvage yard–an interesting process but lacking the visceral impact of the human carnage-driven fare favored by driver’s ed teachers. The really interesting thing about this film nine-minute film is the electronic music score by Louis Barron. The cover is a nod to Zen Arcade.
00:00 Turn Me On Dead Man – Intro 01:12 Shirese – The Glue Murder 03:50 Cult of Dom Keller – Cage The Masters 09:21 Some Pills For Ayala – Some Weed For This Samaritan 13:56 Davi Rodriguez di Lima – Fantasma 18:16 Pseudo Mind Hive – Holy River 23:27 The Silk Railroad – A Caustic Rhythm 29:10 Dark Fog – The Statue 33:21 Mdou Moctar – Chismiten 38:04 Long Slow Dissolve – Sour Bush 43:49 Andrew Thomas Jacobs – Love and LSD in the USA 48:58 Mythic Sunship – Maelstrom
Voyager 1, launched in 1977, has traveled out of the solar system but it’s still sending back data. It detected a hum in deep space–a sort of constant background noise caused by plasma waves. Voyager 1 also contains the Voyager Golden Record, which is an analog disc and it contains a broad selection of music and representative sounds from Earth. Quite a challenge for a single disc. This episode isn’t quite that ambitious. Here you will find a playlist of recent psychedelia.
00:00 Turn Me On Dead Man – Intro 01:29 Thee U.F.O. – Having Faith In And Outside 04:03 Diagonal – Anticipation 08:36 Acid Rooster – Stereofuzz 13:54 Codex Serafini – Time, Change & Become 17:27 The Myriad Dharma – Love Town Singalong 20:43 Technicolor Blood – Last Night 24:55 Modern Stars – She Comes Now 27:54 MK8ULTRA – Rhythm Inside 31:27 Free Machine – Cursive Moon 35:24 Smoke Monolith – Embracing The Tide 38:51 La Otracina – Woke On Waves