While most people go to a concert to see artists that they know and love, I decided to buy a ticket for a fresh face that I had only heard of a few days prior. I was told that this Denver-based performer would be worth writing an article about. However, I wouldn’t dare make you read a concert review of a new local act without that act being totally worthy of your attention.
Last Friday night (Jan 8th) I pulled up to see rapper and singer Dylan Montayne at The Summit Music Hall, a venue in itself unrecognized my many Denverites. Sporting his own full band, Montayne came out to a crowd chanting his name, not bad for only his second Denver show. Montayne’s originality was immediately noticeable, with a style that gave reggae a new found sense energy and hip-hop a more graceful tone. Montayne’s combination of singing and rapping can be traced to a few popular artists, but by putting it on top of a very talented band creates a sound that’s hard to find. After a very bold cover of “Bulls on Parade” by Rage Against The Machine, I knew I had to snap a few photos and share a few words with him after the show.
303 Magazine: Why choose Denver to jumpstart your music career?
Dylan Montayne: During my senior year of college a producer in Denver found my music and convinced me to fly out here to visit. We went to a few shows and I immediately loved it. I saw that people in this city are very passionate, especially for their music, so I thought it would be a great place to start even though I didn’t know anyone at the time.”
What about you and your music do you think sets you apart from the rest?
I think no one has really rapped in the way that I do over reggae music. I’m working with pure reggae artists and bringing in a hip-hop twist . I was scared to do it because reggae music is such an island, and the people in the scene are so passionate about it. I didn’t want to offend them with an Americanized version of the music. But I have found out so far that people in the scene love it.
It is clear that more than just people in the reggae scene love his music. The clearly mixed group of fans cheered and begged for an encore from Montayne, but were forced to wait for another night to catch this Denver gem.
However Montayne has higher hopes than just the Denver circuit, wishing to land a national tour along with other reggae bands to bring his unique yet universal sound across the country.