UK duo Dusky grabbed some major attention last month by beating out mostly mainstream bangers for the coveted #1 spot on Beatport’s Top 100 chart. Alfie Granger-Howell and Nick Harriman, who make up Dusky, have been putting out a widely varied range of music, touching on everything from deep house to techno, all to much acclaim. Their ability to weave in everything from uplifting melodies to low-end density have marked them as a duo unafraid of the depth and originality that electronic music is often accused of lacking. We catch up with them below after their set at HARD’s Day of the Dead at the Red Bull Music Academy Discotheque Stage.

Photo: Jerry Lin


LA CANVAS: Is this your first major US festival?

DUSKY: Not the first one, we played Tomorrowworld. We played somewhere else… uh, we played Decibel Festival in Seattle too. Oh we also played Ultra Festival.


LAC: Have you noticed a difference in playing to US crowds versus European crowds?

D: UK has quite a big repertoire of tracks that they know. They know our scene and people respond quite differently. The UK crowd like to be quite wild. That’s probably partly because of the amount of substances they like to take [laughs] and they like to drink.

LAC: The UK and drinking goes hand in hand.

D: [Laughs] Yeah, definitely.


LAC: Australia’s like that too right?

D: Probably worse over there cause they can’t get drugs over there so they just drink really, really hard. In the UK at least you can get cheap drugs, so, like, by the time it gets past 3, all the drunk people leave and all the people who are really wired are still there.

Photo: Jerry Lin

LAC: Congrats on your #1 Beatport Hit ‘Careless’. What’s it feel like? If you look at the other tracks on the top 10, it’s stuff like Cedric Gervais and Hardwell.

D: It was a nice surprise. Very unexpected, it’s just kind of nice that it’s there. We made it kinda thinking ‘Yeah, we really wanna be Beatport #1. Then it happened and we were like, oh, cool, maybe we should try and get another one.’ [laughs]

LAC: Have you seen a surge of support from people who are like ‘Oh my god, you’re beating out so-and-so’?

D: Yeah, yeah, it was nice! We did a Facebook post, the timing was perfect. It was like the day after Hardwell had gotten announced as DJ Mag’s #1 DJ. So we’re like ‘House Music – 1, EDM – Nil (0). Wooo!’ It got shared like thousands of times and thousands of likes – more so then any of our normal posts. It was good timing. We’ll see, stuff normally takes quite a while to feel the power. If you get a #1 on Beatport it takes like 6 months or almost a year to actually feel the power, for it to translate into your shows. We’ll see how it affects us but hopefully it’s positive.


LAC: You guys started off on the label Anjunadeep. From an artistic standpoint, do you normally come up with tracks and decide where you might want to release them, or do labels come to you and you try to cater to their sound a little bit? The variety of your tracks is quite large.

D: We work with quite a lot of different labels. A lot of that’s out of necessity, because the tracks are so different. Some would work with one label and some wouldn’t. But we try not to try too much to cater to a particular label, we just try to work with different labels. Sometimes we decide we want to do something a bit deeper or techno-y, or garage-y, so we’ll work on relevant ideas. The way we tend to work is we have a huge bank of fragments of ideas. We sit on them and pick them out and take this and put it into a track. After we’re finished we’ll say, ‘Okay, what label will fit with this?’ I think it’s slightly different from a remix. If you’re remixing for a certain label then you’re not gonna put a 12 minute long or a 110 bpm tune. It’ll depend. With originals we just kind of write it and see where they’ll fit.


LAC: With your popularity growing in the US, where do you see yourself in the next 2 or 3 years?

D: Uh [Laughs]. Ask Andrew [their manager]. We never really looked at it like, ‘Oh we wanna get to a certain place,’ we just do it cause we enjoy it. I suppose that comes through in the music and the way we DJ. Hopefully that keeps building. We’re not like, ‘Oh yeah, in 3 years we wanna be Tiesto, or Hardwell.’


LAC: Or Duskwell.

D: [Laughs] Yeah, 13 city tour with Duskwell!


LAC: How would you describe LA in three words?

D: Three words? [Laughs]  Uh, what’s the word for spread out. ‘Vast?’ ‘Hot.’ Uh… I don’t know, I guess I was trying to think of a word to describe the architecture. Cause to me it’s like, I don’t wanna be rude [laughs] but I think the architecture’s quite bleak.


LAC: Alright, ‘bleak’! We’ll take that…[laughs]

D: [Laughs]. ‘Vast. Hot. Bleak.’ [Laughs] ‘See you next time, in 2014. Or never again.’ No, no. Don’t say that ! We’ll say fun. How about that?


Go tag-crazy with our photos from HARD Day of the Dead 2013 on our Facebook


Photo credit: Oliver Walker, FYF Fest


It’s mid-summer, you’re all out of vacation days, and you can practically fry an egg on your roof. Best way to escape this inferno? Head to the embodiment of indie music bliss, F*ck Yeah Fest, at LA State Historic Park. It’s FYF’s 10th anniversary this year, and the festival has put together one of its best and meatiest lineups to date.  So if you haven’t already got it on your calendar, save the date for August 24th and 25th for what’s sure to be a kick-ass, reverb-filled weekend, with Yeah Yeah Yeahs and My Bloody Valentine headlining. See our list of survival tips and must-see acts to make your FYF experience parking-lot-porta-potty-I-don’t-know-who-to-see disaster-free.



1. Go Public: Unless you want to sound like a bad impression of SNL’s The Californians skit, take public transport. There’s the gold line to Chinatown that will shave a good hour and a lot of fury from your commute. Option 2: Bike. (Just remember to employ festive decorations or drop a pin on your phone’s GPS, so your beer-goggled self can remember where you stacked that shit later.)

2. Pre-game in Chinatown: Since you’re smart, you’ve arrived via subway right in the heart of Chinatown. Best advice? Relax, get some cocktails or some dim sum in Chinatown before heading into the battlefield. If beer’s your think, we recommend Melody Lounge on Hill St. for $7 beer flights.




3. Be Fashionably-Practical: We got the advice from DJ Heidi (arguably one of LA’s most fashionable vinyl-addicts/DJs): “Bring your fashion A-game, this ain’t Glastonbury or Outside Lands–sure, there is a little dust–but you are not going to ruin your shoes.”

DOs: Hat, scarves (to field the dust), comfy shoes, summer dresses, ear plugs (Etymotics or Earpeace are great for lowering volume without distorting sound like those crappy foam ones do).

DON’Ts: Heels. And any outfit that looks like it belongs at EDC.


4. Stay Cool: It’s hot as balls out there…so it’s important you drink plenty of water. F* Yeah Fest provides water bottle hydration stations. How did the legendary DJ Harvey (who performed in 2012) escape the heat? Ice Cream.



Photo courtesy of DJ Harvey

5. Porta-Potties: It’s definitely gotten better every single year on this front. But with this shit (pun intended) it’s really logical: either plan ahead and go before you need to go, wear a diaper, or as festival regular Wayne Coyne of The Flaming Lips once recommended “do some practicing where you hold your piss a little bit longer.” Obviously option A is advised. Also, pack a sealed bag of wet-wipes to avoid catastrophic oh-shit-I-took-a-shit-but-there’s-no-TP moments.

6. Bring $$$: FYF is one of the few festivals that has an awesome selection not only of food, but also of rad clothing designers, artists, and records. Just remember, if you are going to buy, make sure you do the rounds and figure out where to stash it.



2013 FYF ACTS TO CATCH (In no particular order…)

Poolside: Former LAC feature and LA-based duo Filip Nikolic and Jeffrey Paradise are signed to Echo Park records and craft the type of sunny, loose disco that you dig hearing poolside. Considering how hot and dusty Echo Park is, it’s time bring on the pool jams.

Charles Bradley : We are psyched this soul crooner will be dropping through. Let the hip swaying, “Amen!”-ing, and smoke wafting begin. And then let’s all hug and make out.



Glasser at Coachella 2011

Glasser: Cameron Mesirow crafts shards of ethereal electronica, a la Zola Jesus and Fever Ray–dripping with eccentric percussion and electro-pop scintillation. She’ll let you just float away.

Flume: The 21-year old electronic beat wonder-kid from Australia is garnering buzz all around the world these days, particularly for his remix of Disclosure’s “You and Me” and single “Sleepless.” You’ll want to see this one up close …because it may be the last time you can. And you’ll want to d-a-n-c-e.


fyf - !!!

!!! At Pacific Festival 2011

!!! – There’s a 90% chance that the lead singer will run into the crowd and try to eat his microphone. ‘nough said.

Dan Deacon : Dan is a Brooklyn-based avant-garde hipster whisperer. He turns on his deck of neon-colored knobs and gadgets, lets the layers of wacky DIY electronic sounds emanate and poof: hipster chicks get naked and skinny boys go nutso like fat kids on fire.

Devendra Barnhart: It won’t matter if you don’t know what language DB is singing in half the time and that he undulates from folk balladry to neo-psychedelia to self-described “space reggae.” He allows you to let your freak flag fly and that’s pretty much what F*ck Yeah Fest is all about.


Toro Y Moi at SXSW 2012

Toro Y Moi : Sure he’s may appear to be a sweet, unassuming guy with a laptop and glasses, but he crafts the type of blissed-out electronica that will have you in a shimmery dance tizzy.

Death Grips: After so much sunny electro-pop, it’s nice to sink into your dark side. If you like it rough and you dig dirty experimental hip-hop, you may find yourself moshing to these guys. Ear plugs are especially necessary here.


TVOR At Spin’s Party SXSW 2011

TV On The Radio & The Yeah Yeah Yeahs: These two rock acts are old friends from Brooklyn so we’re dreaming of a lot of creative cameos within their performances. Maybe even some kinda mash-up?! Tunde and Karen – ya heard?

My Bloody Valentine: The band is stopping in before touring Texas and the rest of Cali. It’s a hipster’s wet dream to close out the weekend by dipping our heads and swaying slowly in the night to their tendrils of shoe-gazy reverb. Yes, please!

{ PHOTOS & TEXT: Faith-Ann Young, unless otherwise credited }

Buccaneer Days: A Chronicle of Shame

It’s 2 p.m. on a Saturday and across from our mooring at N7 in Isthmus Cove at Two Harbors, the orgy has commenced. Those participating are all things considered very discreet. Though they’ve been masquerading naked a top the cockpit of their sailboat for the past hour, they are subtle compared to the wild revelry of the hundreds of binge drinking people dressed like pirates surrounding them in the harbor. It is Buccaneer Days, an annual Pirate Festival on Catalina Island and across from us, three couples in their late fifties are fucking and sucking at a slow-tease pace that seems to coincide with the vaguehrely erotic roll of the ebbing tide beneath us.

Difficult as it is, I will attempt now to explain the concept of an annual Pirate Festival held in a sleepy, insular island town every year for over twenty years. The appeal is simple: go to Catalina, camp out, dress and act like a pirate, drink to excess and abuse whatsoever drugs you find appropriate. Then try not to act like a dick. If you have to barf, do it in the ocean. There is little intrusion by the Coast Guard and less from LA Sheriffs who only seem to give a fuck if you’re beating the shit out of someone. Buccaneer Days is open source madness. Everyone contributes to an air of absurdity in a hyper reality built on popular nostalgia for the secluded whoring, plundering and boozing of the Spanish Main.

What really boggles the mind is how so many people who you might ordinarily classify as dingle berries hanging by a modest hair from the anus of life and just above the threat of drowning in the toilet bowl of mass stupidity could possibly coexist and survive such an ordeal. Later, the true mind boggler will be when you realize you are the greatest dingle berry of all.


Two days prior, on Thursday at about 1:45 p.m., I sit in the Catalina Ferry Terminal beneath the Vincent Thomas Bridge in San Pedro. It is deathly still. A pervasive quietness, save the occasional premature “argh” haunts the space that will soon serve as the most popular gateway to Buccaneer Days. It’s the only choice for mainlanders like me without access to a seaworthy vessel. In twenty-four hours, a surge of makeshift pirates will flood the Terminal like a proverbial buccaneer’s Ellis Island. Those without the foresight to drink to the very doorstep of blackout will uncomfortably shuffle with the eager anticipation of the bar aboard the ferry. Those already blacked out will repetitively scream the same pirate slogans and teeter back and forth. Despite the drug-sniffing dogs, many in line for the ferry will slip onto the boat with enticing bags of poorly cut coke, shake weed and cheap ecstasy.

But fuck that Johnny-come-lately noise. It’s still Thursday and the massive influx of walking/talking refutations to the theory of natural selection have yet to descend on me like the hoard of insects they are. It is calm and after driving pedal to the metal down the twenty odd miles of the 110 from Downtown to San Pedro I eagerly await the bucolic serenity and relative isolation of Two Harbors.

To call Two Harbors a city would be a gross overstatement. Two Harbors is the sort of demi-village that the aquatically-minded and island-hearted have trickled into over the past thirty years to escape the ongoing cultural apocalypse of fast-living and stunted social evolution on the mainland. To spend time in Two Harbors is to live, if only temporarily, in some alternate world where the Ruskies already dropped the bomb and the relative provincialism/closed minded vibe is a small price to pay for not having to live amongst the genetically mutated back in Long Beach. It is all-in-all a lovely Faustian bargain. Trade isolation for peace of mind and irrelevance in the modern world for the slow life.

I cannot help but fixate on this notion when around 9 p.m. I stumble to the top deck of our sailboat, Carnival, and look north towards the mainland. For the five hours I’ve been in Two Harbors, I have been abusing aforementioned shitty shake weed in conjunction with a steady regimen of cheap beer and a bottle of “Meritage” wine called Dr. Jebediah Drinkwell that I purchased at Trader Joes because it looked unrepenently shitty.  Punishing oneself with shitty booze seems apropos.

On clear nights the sky above Two Harbors is replete with stars. The Milky Way lactates across the heavens and you can actually convince yourself that there is a God above and he still gives a fuck about us. As you shift your gaze from pure zenith down many degrees towards the port of Los Angeles twenty odd miles distant the light pollution of a 24-hour-a-day port burns through the atmosphere like a false dawn. It is at this moment that any rational viewer, or those imbued with the special truth divining ability provided by chemical intoxication, can deduce that Two Harbors sits somewhere between true paradise and the industrialized hell we’ve brought about this earth.

In a frenzy of premature cabin fever, my two companions and I dingy to shore in search of steady ground where I can accurately differentiate between my sea legs and the bizarre marionette steps I take in my near black-out state. The dedicated drinkers are already at work in the indoor bar, but we are stoned and motivated so we opt to retreat from the glow of civilization to the north and trek the two odd miles to the other side of the isthmus.

We stumble past the last unlit buildings down an unmarked dirt road pointing more or less towards the cove and deep water on the opposite side of the island.  The road sidles and snakes between slopes in a clear, narrow valley not more than a half-mile wide. In the light of a now-setting crescent moon the shadows and accompanying stillness become ghostly and ominous. I was once a rural beast, but after years living in Downtown I am an urban monster. Things like stillness and quiet are no longer contemplative and serene. They’re terrifying harbingers of impending doom. The gentle slopes remind me of something out of the Bible, some sort of awful valley of the shadow of the death, where I refuse to lie down in green pastures and the promise of goddam quiet waters is the only thing motivating me forward.

I move deliberately in paranoid silence. Every bush is a killer buffalo laying in wait; every dip in the road some sort of island-made pangee pit filled with feces, smeared spears and a little note at the bottom that says “locals only.” Again, I cannot stress the importance of the aforementioned shake weed.

The hills flanking the harbor on the backside are awash in strange shadows. There is glowing phosphorescence out in the harbor, the source of which we can’t see. I wholly expect some sort of Travis Walton type alien abduction scenario to await us over the crest, so I pound the rest of my Coors Light in what I assume is the last moment of my terrestrial anal virginity. But instead of E.T. our eyes slowly focus on what is just an asshole in an elaborately lit boat corralling countless fish into a trawling net. I down another beer.

Around 4 a.m. I awake from my slumber to a full-blown, skull-fucking hangover. I am face up in the forecastle cabin staring up through the hatch as Venus flies back and forth with the pitching of the boat in the rising swell.  My stomach rumbles and I gently massage what I assume to be a burp out of my lower belly. But the burp has a terrible liquid weight behind it. I have just enough time to remove my wallet from my pants so as not to drop it in the water and pull half my body through the roof hatch before my mouth and throat fill with vomit. In a rather gymnastic maneuver I heave myself belly first onto the deck and crawl barf-mouthed to the rail where I spew into the otherwise unblemished water. After a few extraneous spasms of my throat reflex I collapse on the deck and admire the sunrise to the North. When I remember the color spectrum is just light pollution I vomit more Coors Light, Meritage wine and carne asada onto King Neptune’s playground below.


Some people have the motto “No Bad Days.” Publicly I say good for you to those people. Privately I say fuck off.  Friday is a shit day. Sure I’m on an island watching my friends drink on a plank hanging off a sailboat in an idyllic harbor, but the reverberating hangover headache causes my motor skills and IQ to drop a good 30%. I am in a stupor for a good deal of the day.  I could have seen a mermaid or been adopted by a pod of dolphins and not have given a shit.

The afternoon passes uneventfully. More friends trickle in and more beer is inserted into our respective stomachs to mixed results. A thunderstorm moves through around 3 and washes the shame and dander off my body.  Despite the greatest display of lightning I have seen in my seven years in California, I do not attempt to move.

Hours pass and the storm moves through leaving hundreds of high level, little fluffy clouds in the sky. I recognize the irony and wanting to be direct in all things, especially music, I put on the song “Little Fluffy Clouds” by the Orb. Some acquaintances of the boat owner have rafted their rented sailboat alongside ours. I suspect that I will hate them because they insist on playing some piece of shit Chris Brown song so loud it drowns out my own symphonic selection.

The sun begins to set. The wildest colors possess the myriad clouds above turning the sky into some psychedelic masterpiece of modern meteorology. A mindless chorus of domestic violence apologism repeats endlessly “Live Your Life! Live Your Life!” from the speakers on the other boat.  One of the stunted man-children points at the sky and yells over the four on the floor holocaust “This is the photo of the trip dude! Mad love for Catalina!” I smile mindlessly back at him, masking my disdain. Later at the bar when one of my friends nearly chokes him out for hitting on his girlfriend, I will smile one of the most genuine, heartfelt smiles of my life.

There is something about Buccaneer Days that is conducive to cuckoldry. Older gentlemen dressed in fine red coats and powdered wigs accompany wild-haired women dressed as whores. The wenches pinch your nipples and ask coarsely when “you’re going to fuck them.” Then they’ll grab you or your friend by the balls and make you dance with them as their husbands watch. They’ll pull you closer and whisper in your ear for you to grab their ass or finger them, but it’s not about you. You are only an object. When you finger them and they moan and ask “do you like that?” they’re not asking you, they’re just mouthing words at their foppish husbands who look on and try to swallow their sobs of emasculation.

Despite the sheer volume of intoxicated people there are few fights. Most conflicts are resolved with the purchase of grog or a hearty, shared “argh.” The displaced bikers mind their own business and the inland empire crew does their best to black out without too much destruction of property.

There’s a pirate band. I should mention that.  They’re actually a hard rock band from San Diego named Damaged Goods, but for the intents and purposes of Buccaneer Days, they are a pirate band. And what sort of music does a pirate band play? They play hard rock covers, of course.   When they open their set with a Cure cover someone in the distant bar screams “Faggots!” The musical pirates get the point and by 10 p.m. they’re playing “Wynona’s Big Brown Beaver,” a slap-happy, demented piece of 90s rock by Primus.

I have never heard this song covered because most audiences find it gauche or even repulsive, but their song selection here of all places has hit home. Pirates and wenches flood forward and applaud heartily when the song ends. They then launch into “Killing in the Name Of” by Rage Against the Machine and the most respectful mosh pit of all time erupts. LA County Sheriffs smile and let the controlled violence continue, because unlike everything you ever heard about Woodstock ’99, these hard rock fans are just trying to get their kicks without raping anybody. It is a slice of sublime anger.

Around this time, my friend nearly chokes out our douche bag drunkard acquaintance. We use the promise of his girlfriend’s body to lure the choke artist through a crowd of cuckolds and wenches to the dingy dock where the fucking boat won’t start. We end up flooding the engine and attracting the attention of a crew of Coast Guard patrolmen.  We are all stinking drunk, attempting to operate a water-borne vehicle in the state of California. This is of course illegal, but so long as we promise to be cool and bring life jackets back the Coast Guard will let us go.  They are more interested in the drunken pirates fucking in the sand fifty feet distant.

My drunk, choke out buddy angrily tries to start the outboard motor. For cosmological reasons I will never understand, the fates choose to reward him by starting the motor on the first pull. He begins to scream, “get in the boat you fucking fuck dicks! Get in my fucking boat!” The Coast Guards shine their lights on us and attempt to interfere, but we gun it out of the dock and make it into the labyrinth of moorings before they can catch us.



Imagine Buccaneer Days as the last party on Earth, the type of wild catharsis the entire world would engage in if they knew a giant comet would obliterate us all in a week. In 2011 this concept isn’t far-fetched.  Doom saturates the consciousness. It’s this sort of insipid, all-encompassing paranoia that makes dressing up like a pirate and drinking till comprehension is beyond the faculties of the mind seem like a rational response to the world equilibrium. It’s this sort of dread that makes having an orgy with two other couples in public seem reasonable. It’s this sort of thirst for escapism that makes you tap the keg at 9 a.m.

Which is what we do. We tap the keg at 9 a.m., because the world is strange and fucked-up and from the perspective of someone who wakes up deeply hung-over on a sailboat surrounded by people wearing pantaloons and spots of vomit from the night before, the only way out is deeper through this god-awful rabbit hole. Deeper, further until the white rabbit of hope and satisfaction is caught and slaughtered mercilessly by confused, coked out pirate mongoloids as Damaged Goods plays a Nirvana cover in the distance.

“Is that ‘Rape Me?’ No? Well who gives a fuck? Smear some more bunny blood on my face, babe, and suck my dick because the whole harbor is watching.”

It is one of the most beautiful mornings of my life.  The sun comes up like a ball of hope, only to illuminate a harbor of shame. There are people passed out on the sand at the beach when we to pick up my friend Jake who chose to sleep with a cougar named Karen. The early morning refuse of a Buccaneer Days party looks like an awful time warp where all the extras for the Papa Roach video “Last Resort” were sucked up in 2000 and dropped off dressed as pirates eleven years in the future.

One major concern for those of us pirates still clasping desperately to what’s left of our souls is hygiene. Yes, there are showers at Two Harbors. You put in seventy-five cents and get ninety seconds, unless the power goes out, in which case you get nothing. When you’re surrounded by water you just don’t see the logic in paying for it. We opt to bathe in the ocean. Considering the amount of boat sewage dumped in the harbor over this weekend this is not wise, but we do not care about these particulars.

I do, however, have another slight problem and that problem is swamp ass. It feels like someone sewed sandpaper to the inside of my ass cheek, which is not beyond the realm of reasonable concern at Buccaneer Days.

I am a man of innovation and being without proper soap or bathing instruments I ask my friend Jake to pump some dish soap down my asscrack before I jump into the ocean. It’s a gamble, but it pays off. With a little scrubbing and a lot of salt water douching, my ass feels next to normal.  Thank God on high.

The day could be considered a grand success. Thirty or so friends including the members of Damaged Goods join us on the boat throughout the day as we binge drink and watch an orgy. It’s good old-fashioned spectator sport. I can feel myself devolving as I watch 50somethings plow each other out and I discuss the relative merits of Neil Peart versus Danny Carey. I glance over the side and the reflection of my face in the water below has a far more pronounced brow than I remember having. When I attempt to stand my knuckles drag on the deck. I attempt to protest, but my voice box and lingual organs can only produce odd grunts and moans. I am becoming ape.

A lovely blond who is strangely pure-looking and yet tolerant of amateur pirating borrows my camouflage jacket. She checks the pocket and finds a condom and my AARP card. She is oddly unoffended. I realize that she doesn’t think I’m a total dirt bag and even if she does, she’s ok with it.  I begin to think too much, which makes me want to piss.

In a microcosm devoid of rules and imbued with a seemingly lax tolerance for exhibitionism, public urination is strangely still a faux pas. Beneath deck my esteemed colleagues are polishing off the rest of the tequila and a line six-deep has amassed to use the last working head on board. I am desperate and have no other course of action. In a very casual maneuver, I pocket the tequila bottle and retire to the forecastle cabin where I piss so much I nearly fill it.The PlayBox hd application has got many awesome features and has loads of amusement for you and your family. It is worked with a remarkable interface to see rapidly. playbox for android is concocted brimming with choices to get additional enjoyment with no cost. Sky HD is another free application; you can make Sky HD download for watching films and every single other toon, and so forth on any gadget.From somewhere I hear faint strands of “Last Resort” being blasted through boat speakers. Someone up top says “P. Roach! Classic!” Things could not get any stranger.

Someone gives me a handful of mushrooms, which I swallow. This will be the only time on psychedelics I encounter a landscape so naturally foreign and absurd as to render the mushrooms ineffective. The combination of Buccaneer Days and Psilocybin was like an existential double negative. The paradox was too much. Mind and liver could not possibly foist any stranger paradigm on my consciousness so both shut down. I spend the night in a haze of apathy. I forgo hand washing. I listen as my coked-out friend tells me how much he loves the world because of its “potential.” I let Skip, the bass player from Damaged Goods, tell me to follow my heart and then I return to the boat where at 3 a.m. I witness three drunken bastards fall into the ocean and I do nothing.  Blessed sleep washes over me.


The general consensus on Sunday morning is fuck pirates. This shit has got to end. I am exhausted and without even the slightest landmark of sanity with which to draw a bearing. I opt to take the ferry home and I spend the entire ride wondering what the fuck is wrong with me and if indeed that foul smell in the boat cabin is me, which it is.

At Buccaneer Days there is no middle road to tread. There is no moderation and there is no thoughtful reasoning about the paths of righteousness. There can only be madness. Such is the brutal truth of the matter. In 2011, the only way to escape a mad world is to descend further and further into madness. We all stoke the fires of insanity in a foolhardy attempt to put out the scalding embers of our age with greater flames while the onlooker with the bucket of water is labeled a heretic. I wonder what will become of us. I wonder how big we can get the bonfire before it consumes us all. I have so many questions and, after a weekend like this, absolutely no answers.

I write this now for posterity. It is a cautionary tale. Mothers tell your children not to do what I have done. But yet no matter how stupid and ill-advised and juvenile and cathartic and electric and exciting and completely necessary it was I can’t help but feel silly telling you not to go, if only so I could have it for myself.

by Dan Johnson | @evolvesticker