East Forest has been crafting musical rituals for psilocybin journeys for the past decade, and he just released a five-hour album titled “Music For Mushrooms: A Soundtrack For The Psychedelic Practitioner” coincidentally just a few days after Denver decriminalized magic mushrooms. East Forest kicked off Consciousness Hacking’s Awakened Futures Summit, with an immersive concert in the round while others guided the group through a Cacao ceremony, which is a legal psychoactive substance that lasts about an hour or so. East Forest has also been collaborating with Consciousness Hacking’s founder Mikey Siegel’s Group Flow experiments that use biometric data from the audience to explore group synchrony and collective flow states, like for example using people’s heartbeats as a music instrument or eventually aggregating biometric information to dynamically respond to the audience.
East Forest also collaborated with Ram Dass where he asked him questions and then edited his wisdom teaching answers into musical poems that are being released this year in four different chapters. He’s already released the first and second chapters, and just released the third chapter on the Summer solstice with the final chapter coming out in August.
I had a chance to catch up with East Forest on the first day of the Awakened Future Summit where we talked about his past decade of musical exploration within the psychedelic underground. He’s tells the story of his journey of cultivating a musical tradition that’s specifically crafted for psilocybin journeys. We also talk about creating sonic architectures that are tailored for psychedelic journeys, and how he blends different genres in order to cultivate a tradition that’s designed to help people go in inner journeys of transformation. His uses quite a lot of looping, which allows him to perform live and dynamically respond to the energy that’s arising in the room. He also uses quite a bit of recorded sounds from nature to create polychronic rhythms and a connection to nature, which creates an immersive experience that takes you around the world bringing in sounds that are indigenous to specific regions.
He also talks about how the future of 360 audio is going to take off once there are consumer-ready mixing platforms that can take what he’s doing in 2D, and then be able to spatialize it within a room. He’s already performing in-the-round on the same level as his audience, and so this type of musical ritual designed for inner journeys would be perfect for further exploration of spatial audio delievered through ambisonic speakers. He’s got a lot of ideas, and is looking for technology collaborators to help to push the bleeding edge of what’s possible with immersive and interactive music rituals and concerts designed for contemplative and transformative experiences.
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