Ayahuasca – A Soundscape

And now for something completely different!

I’ve been trying to enroll in one of the ayahuasca workshops with Ceu de Amsterdam for some time now, but unfortunately they’ve been selling our in record time, so I haven’t had any luck yet. While a workshop has been on my mind, I have been thinking of how I can recreate a glimpse of the experience as I remember it. Music and sound are a huge part of the experience, with a host of talented musicians playing throughout. Other times, I feel, music is flowing from some external or internal source, that is music is “there”, in “that” place, part of my subjective experience. Some might call it music of the angels!

This mix is my attempt to describe how music and sound flows through me, enhancing the emotional and visual landscapes I travel through. The sounds are very varied and eclectic, not always pleasant. There are times I feel time gets stuck in a loop, or time loses its meaning completely. I use a lot of loops and samples to emphasise that point. Some points are intense, pushing me forward to the next level of experience, whether I like it or not. There are dark, unsettling moments, where the weirdness can feel overwhelming. These moments pass, often transitioning into beautiful, warm, embracing sounds and voices emerging from the mist and reassuring me that yes, everything is ok. Artists like Apparat and Bibio for me are the representation of the musicians and singers at the workshops, who often seem to break into song at exactly the moment I need it. Just when i thought I was lost forever in the dark, they bring the light!

Other parts, in particular the Meredith Monk song, show how the soundscape can be utterly weird, playful, funny, mad. I always laugh at this song, it is a perfect representation of the times when I look around the room and see the apparent madness of the events unfolding around me, sometimes you really just have to laugh!

I have always got a sense of vibration underlying this “awakened” state, which is perfectly demonstrated by a string instrument like the Indian sitar. At the quiet times, I feel that sound is everywhere, the foundation of existence. The people around me are like Gods, lounging in this eternal place. Funnily enough, I don’t think there has been a sitar at the workshops I have attended, so to me it is one of the internal/external sources that produces it. The Cluster & Eno track is the representation of this sensation for me.

Finally the quiet times are also perfectly portrayed in the Ernst Reijseger songs from the fantastic Werner Herzog documentary Cave of Forgotten Dreams. The combination of wind and string instruments and wonderfully soft voices really sums up for me how music can make a direct deep spiritual connection. The atmosphere in this album is second to none for creating the soundscape to a calm, spiritually charged space.

Hope you enjoy!

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