Basilica Hudson is one of those gorgeous cathedrals of industry whose sublime architecture – brick walls framing huge windows and 12,000 feet of space – seems ideally suited to its new life as an arts and performance center. Located on the waterfront just 100 feet from the Hudson train station, it has hosted several ambitious events under the tutelage of musician, singer-songwriter and photographer Melissa Auf der Maur (formerly of Hole and The Smashing Pumpkins) and filmmaker Tony Stone.
One is the Basilica Music Festival, which kicks off on August 10 and 11 and is a conflation of the Hudson Music Fest and the Hudson Black Arts & Cultural Festival. The event is curated (the verb reflects the attention paid to presenting the fest as a carefully calibrated aesthetic immersion, rather than a static lineup of a bunch of bands) by Pitchfork’s Brandon Stosuy and Brian DeRan, of Leg Up Management. An advance ticket for the entire weekend costs only $25 – plus, fans from the City can camp out nearby for a more $15 or $20 a night, including showers.
The space will be festooned with sculptures and other art, including the installation of Kris Perry’s Machines on the evening of August 10 – an event accompanied by a small army of metal noisemakers. The next night, August 11, New York City’s Gang Gang Dance will take over, along with its musical and artist friends.
Performing August 10 are Liturgy, Mick Barr, C. Lavender and Brian Dewan, along with the Rainbow in the Dark Deejays. The doors open at 9 p.m.; tickets cost $5.
On Saturday, August 11, the space will be transformed into a musical and visual extravaganza. Blazer SS, described as “Heavy Dub, Roots, Ragga and Dancehall,” is scheduled from 3 to 6 p.m., followed by Gang Gang Dance, Prince Rama, Psychic Paramount, Hiro Kone and Blanko & Noiry in the evening, starting at 7 p.m. Art by William Stone, Pia Ehne, Jim Krewson, Todd Jordon, Said Laska and others will be on display.
A sunset cruise will depart from the dock. Meanwhile, the Hudson Music Fest will be happening in town August 10-12, with more than 130 acts scheduled for more 30 venues, including two members of C. B. Smith & the Lucky Devils – Brian Hollander on Dobro and Matt Bowe on mandolin – at Club Helsinki on Saturday night at 9 p.m.; the suggested donation is $10.