The upstate New York festival continues to provide a haven for the sound-obsessed.
Whenever someone tells you something is revelatory, take a teaspoon of salt. Basilica Soundscape has been wreathed in clover and sheathed with hosannas since debuting four years ago, most reports citing the beautiful setting and pedigree of its curation, focused on music and peppered with the visual and written arts. The event is named conjointly, for the fest's dark brick home -- a beautifully converted pencil shaving distillery and maple leaf sorting facility that now looks like a place Matthew Barney wouldn't mind visiting (he did, actually, and has collaborated with fest curator Brandon Stosuy) -- and, presumably, for the martian contours of its sonic output. Its list of performers have almost nothing in common sonically, but all live on the outskirts of town.
Autumn finally began its slow creep in the breezy, hilly, crook of Hudson, New York, where 85 percent of the noise pollution on any given day seems to be generated by crickets. It was a golden evening, with sideways light that makes every flitting gnat look like a firefly. The festival, which would eventually become as loud as anything that's ever happened on Earth, began quietly, with the confident and calm Weyes Blood, who turned a guitar into a harpsichord and married it to voice much like the river glade across the street.
Indrajit Banerjee & Gourisankar were in the right room with the right people. The virtuosity and heart the pair swept into the imposing room was an abstract lesson on magic -- the latticework they created still doesn't seem real or achievable. "Thank you so much for the great inspiration," Gourisankar said after (and referencing) a sustained, booming applause. "We really are so much happy to be here -- you guys are just awesome."