Like most dedicated music fans, I am always down to take a journey to see an artist I enjoy play a show. This past weekend I went to a venue that is certainly off the beaten path for many New Yorkers; venturing all the way upstate to Wappingers Falls to see Russ Liquid and Michal Menert play at CoSM. Upon entering the grounds at CoSM (Chapel of Sacred Mirrors) owned by Alex and Allyson Grey, I noted a certain sense of serenity that filled the air. On top of the hill of the sprawling estate sits a home filled with kind and like minded people, all coming together to celebrate art and music. Everyone is asked to leave their shoes at the door upon entry, and no alcohol is served at the event. However, there is a healthy dose of joy and laughter at every turn. The people there are all in good spirits, ready to dance in a celestial celebration.
Wandering through the many rooms there is so much to take in; from the giant psychedelic paintings adorning the walls, to the artists creating live paintings in the living room; the art is something to behold. Made mainstream through artwork for acts like Tool, Beastie Boys and many others, Alex Grey has become one of the most celebrated psychedelic artists of all time. After getting lost in a few different works of art I finally made it to the dance floor, just in time to get down to Russ Liquid. The room was hot, the beats were funky and Russ was fire on the trumpet. It was clear that Russ was having a blast and so was everyone in the crowd sweating in their socks as he dropped some fresh hip hop before finishing his set.
Escaping outside in need of fresh air I headed to the backyard of the property where people gathered around a giant bonfire lighting the night. The air was crisp, the fire was warm and the entertainment never stopped. Adjacent to the bonfire was an area where a fire performance was taking place. Different flow artists took their turns performing their speciality for the crowd, ranging from fire poi, fire staff and even fire fans. Impressive would be an understatement. Bliss could be seen on the faces in the crowd witnessing the dangerous and skillful acts. However if fire isn’t your flavor, there was also a dome in the back of the house filled with ambient music and trippy visuals. Here people are grouped on blankets relaxing, and appreciating the visual artist who seems more like a mad genius running the show. Encased in the dome of artistic beauty, it was a great respite from the high energy of the surrounding party.
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With so much to see and do throughout the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors it a miracle I caught any of Michal Menert’s set. Returning to the sweaty dance floor, I boogied to Menert’s experimental tunes, laced with jazz and funk. Getting down on that dance floor felt like dancing at the perfect house party; the music was fun, the people were kind and no one was sloppy. Everyone was there for the right reasons, creating a communal vibe of unique respect and positivity. Truly this event emanated the vibes that all music festivals should. The security was present, yet polite. There was affordable food available in the quaint cafe, and of course free water for all. Alex and Allyson Grey spoke to everyone with the smile and grace as if you were an old friend. Everything was well organized and ran smoothly, it is safe to say that I will be returning to CoSM for future events. Though perhaps not for everyone, I would recommend checking out CoSM to any kind hearted, open minded individual looking for a unique experience.