Psychedelics are not interchangeable for this purpose, and if it weren't for the war on drugs they could probably be used for some interesting science on auditory processing. Information from TIHKAL on two otherwise not unusual psychedelics with specific auditory effects:

N,N-diisopropyltryptamine specifically messes with pitch perception in such a way as to destroy the perception of harmony. From one of the experience reports: "No effects were noted with respect to clarity of speech, and both comprehension and interpretation were normal. Music was rendered completely disharmonious although single tones sounded normal."

Meanwhile, 5-methoxy N,N-diisopropyltryptamine distorts "musical character and interpretation." From one of the experience reports: "The program was a program of Irish music... What I heard were three distant, fraudulent selections with generically meaningless words, mumbled so as to sound authentic. Everything was faked."

Maybe if I could get my hands on one of these I could understand what it's like to be James Miller (in the musical respect only). Perhaps he's totally lacking the hard-to-explain satisfying feeling that comes when you hear notes played together whose frequencies are at a small-integer ratio.

Psychedelics are not interchangeable for this purpose, and if it weren't for the war on drugs they could probably be used for some interesting science on auditory processing.

Sure. If I had to be more specific than just 'psychedelics', I'd probably say either LSD (due to Deadheads) or mescaline (due to Huxley).

And those two excerpts are fascinating. What does it mean for something to sound 'distant, fraudulent'? I can't even imagine. Maybe it's like a musical version of Capgras delusion.

More "Stupid" Questions

by NancyLebovitz 1 min read31st Jul 2013498 comments

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This is a thread where people can ask questions that they would ordinarily feel embarrassed for not knowing the answer to. The previous "stupid" questions thread went to over 800 comments in two and a half weeks, so I think it's time for a new one.