Crosses. Stained glass windows. A gathering of worshipers. At its zenith, dance music is often described as a religious experience, forging connections between individuals that transcend race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and beyond. With materials sourced from numerous churches and temples, Flash Factory, New York’s hottest new venue, presents itself as a sanctuary to electronic music. A white stone altar salvaged from a Bronx church serves as the DJ booth.
Congregants are funneled through a small, logistics-focused narthex before spilling into the nave of the Flash Factory. Immediately to the right lies an accessible, rectangular bar as well as a multiple windows for coat check along the right wall. Convenient on the in and out, as too many venues too often build up coat check queues that take up more time than the line outside. Directly ahead lays the dance floor, stretching far to the left, with the pulpit of the DJ booth to the right. Upside down crosses line the rafters, with a massive stained glass window directly behind the altar to talent.
On the southeast side of the dance floor lays an antechamber with a second bar, also flanked by stained glass, and a sitting area organized around Flash Factory’s own Tree of Knowledge. The remaining L—the surrounding floor is a slim, elevated VIP section. The restrooms, located in a narrow hallway behind the DJ platform, are fully staffed. The entire venue, of course, is cloaked in atmospheric darkness, this is a temple not to the individual, but to the music and the collective experience it inspires. The low light level and dark beats create a synergy that pulsates throughout the venue. If you haven’t attended mass at the Flash Factory yet, its doors are open. Saints and sinners alike welcome.“
By: David Carpenter
Photo Credit: Jon Sevik