Overdose. Drug-induced death. Seizure. Ecstasy. Molly. Kush. Coke. Unfortunately, these words linked with music festivals and raves have made more headlines than the performers themselves. The drug culture associated with the industry is rampant, but why does it attract more attention that the music culture itself? Party drugs, such as LSD and MDMA, first entered the electronic music scene in order to enhance the overall experience of rave goers; such drugs increase one’s euphoria, suppress appetite, and relax the body. In other words, they spread good vibes and keep them rolling ’til the final drop. Why not embrace and feel the rave? It’s one thing to pop a pill, but it has become increasingly common in North American culture to attend raves purely for the (chemical) high.
To be fair, this article is slightly biased. My first impetus to attend a rave was purely to get high with a psychedelic light show in the background. What changed my perspective? I had a revelation and decided to start listening to the music. While my friends sipped on or popped whatever substance they were feeling in the back, I worked my way to the front, having the time of my life. Now, I attend music festivals with other like-minded ravers, and we bask in the PLUR. While drugs do enhance the lasers, the intensity of the beat, and the complex dance steps, they’re not an crucial part of the experience. As a matter of fact, the drug culture has proven deadly, time and time again. Countless music festivals, concerts, and raves have been shut down due to an overdose, seizure, or drug-related fight.
In a personal account, a close rave friend of mine asked a fellow raver for a sip of his water bottle, only for it to be laced with molly and other chemicals. She was then rushed to the nearest hospital to have her stomach pumped. This totally defeats the purpose of raves. The night was ruined, concert shut down, performers stranded, and attendees disappointed; it was a night meant to bring together people of all backgrounds to enjoy the electronic dance music, but instead the preeminent drug culture wreaked havoc on the event.
Come to performances for the music, not the molly. Come for the trip experience bound to ensue if you give your soul to the music, the bass gods, and the drop. Come for the purest form of love, PLUR, in all its ridiculous glory.