Kratom has come a long way. It’s one of our bestselling products, famed for its varied effects. As users report, kratom can be both energizing at lower doses and tranquillizing at higher doses. Surely, this means kratom has potential when combined with music?
Combining psychoactive substances with music is part of human nature. Our ancestors did it during rituals and some of the best popular music of the past 100 years has been inspired by substances like cannabis, LSD, ecstasy, mushrooms or even amphetamines. So does kratom bring a new aural experience to the table?
“Listening to music, really listening to music, becomes pretty hard at times.”
Kratom in low doses: hi-energy music
Especially in the United States, kratom has made a name for itself in the fitness and bodybuilding scene. In smaller doses kratom gives a euphoric energy boost which goes really well with repetitive fitness activities. It is typically used as a pre-workout supplement to give extra energy and motivation to get through exercises that have become boring after doing them so often. We’ll return to the subject of kratom and working out another time, but you can guess what this means for music.
Music that works well with kratom at low dosages can be rhythmic. As you will feel slightly euphoric the music should preferably be uplifting. One of the best choices can be found on the German Kompakt label which is specialized in sleek melodic techno. Try to find the Fabric mix-cd (Fabric 13 to be precise) by Michael Mayer for a perfect example. You can even combine it with home exercise for the complete trip. The house rhythms complement the energy of kratom, while the voices go well with the happy feeling it induces. His recent mix for DJ Kicks is a nice alternative as is his slightly more melancholic label mate Superpitcher on Today (from 2005).
kratom in High doses: all about the calm
We live busy lives and tend to scatter our attention. Listening to music, really listening to music, becomes pretty hard at times. Kratom isn’t mind-altering like psychedelics, but it does slow you down. In this super relaxed state, it becomes easier to listen in a typically detached way to music and pick out little details you gloss over when multitasking in everyday life. Lots of kratom users who are into music cite their preference for calm music, with deep frequencies as a preferred option. Kratom users that are into electronic music often say they like the music to sound not too digital. Some organic sounds and a bit of breathing space in the music seem to really work when deeply dazed.
That casts the net quite wide, so here are some suggestions to get you going:
Biosphere – Cirque (2000)
Geir Jenssen is generally considered one of the greatest ambient musicians of the past 25 years. From the north of Norway, he captivates listeners with intensely beautiful records of quiet and melodic music you can really lose yourself in. Most of his albums could end up on this list, but Cirque is his most sunny album full of nice little organic touches.
Boards of Canada – Music Has A Right To Children (1998)
This 1998 debut has become a psychedelic classic. Boards of Canada, like no other electronic group, is able to create a warm sound that makes the listener relive childhood memories. With a good dose of kratom, you can let all the strange sounds and children's voices enchant you in full detail.
Edgar Froese – Aqua (1974)
German synthesizer legends Tangerine Dream have always been a psychonaut favourite. Their long cosmic pieces have been the soundtrack to countless trips. Founder Edgar Froese also had time to produce some excellent solo albums which are a delight for the lover of organic sounding electronics.
Cluster – Sowiesoso (1976)
Germany has a long tradition of dreamy synthesizer music. Another cult duo, Cluster, was specialized in slow and peaceful tracks. Their music eventually caught the attention of ambient pioneer Brian Eno, who collaborated with them on a number of albums. Sowiesoso is prime Cluster, slightly uplifting, never intruding, but full of pleasurable sounds that pass by like a summer daydream.
Steve Hillage - Rainbow Dome Musick (1979)
If you are really deep into kratom relaxation you probably don’t want anything to change. One of the best albums for this state is this stunning album by hippie guitarist Steve Hillage. Hillage made this album especially for the Rainbow Dome at the Festival for Mind-Body-Spirit in London. It consists of two long pieces in which nothing special really happens. It’s just pure bliss.
Deepchord Presents: Echospace – The Coldest Season (2007)
Dubtechno is a mostly minimalistic offshoot of techno which began in the mid-1990s. With its light and positive sound, it has remained a popular niche throughout the years. Its trance-like pulse and soft melodies often make it the to-go sounds for different sorts of trips. And it also sounds pretty amazing on kratom taking you on a journey into ultimate stillness. The Coldest Season by the prolific Deepchord is a classic of the genre and a nice starting point for a deep kratom session.
Spiritualized – Pure Phase (1995)
Singer/guitarist Jason Pierce used to be in Spacemen 3, one of the druggiest bands of all time. After they broke up he started the successful Spiritualized which specialized in a soft, blissful form of rock music. Their second album Pure Phase is a great kratom album full of clever drug references and matching the music. Prepare to lose your way in weary ballads or droning instrumentals like the title track.
Jimi Hendrix – Axis: Bold As Love (1967)
Jimi Hendrix made a number of psychedelic classics. But he also wrote some amazing ballads of which a number can be found on his second album. Hendrix soft and relaxed voice just goes really well with kratom, his adventurous imagery does the rest. ‘Little Wing’, ‘Castles in the Sand’ and ‘One Rainy Wish’, it doesn’t get better than this.
So that’s it. Check out our innovative kratom line (like the new powerful Jetpackkratom Exosphere) and get into the music. And if you have other musical suggestions, please share them in the comments.
Author: El Duque
Main image: Michael Kray under Creative Commons license