CU Denver alumni perform at the Alamo
Dylan Streight plays the Alamo Drafthouse comfortably
Dylan Streight played the Alamo Drafthouse on Colfax on Aug. 24. Streight and his bandmates played to a packed house Friday for a barfly concert across the hall from the movie theater.
Apart from Streight himself, the band also included Wes Hughes on bass, Kenneth Boykins on drums, Luke Maxon on keys, and Elyse Jeanette who stood in on vocals for a missing member. Among those on stage, Maxon is the only member who did not study at CU Denver, and while most of the members were alumni, Wes Hughes is currently enrolled at the university.
The band had a laid-back feel with jazz guitar interludes that entered into conversation with Jeanette’s powerful vocals. Each time she opened her mouth, the audience remained captivated by the clear warmth of her voice. Cheers from family and friends rang out each time she was given the spotlight, and close to the end of their set, Streight even mentioned that he was trying to get her to continue sing with his group.
Between songs, Streight made sure to introduce his fellow musicians to the crowd and made note of one particular song title. “No Symmetry” was an upbeat number that lead to a breakdown in which Streight called out the refrain, “You’re all, you’re all I need / I slip and I can’t even speak.” He cycled through these lyrics a few times before diving into a riveting guitar solo. “I didn’t even know that was going to happen,” Streight reported, surprised at the end of the song.
Another noteworthy addition to the set list was a jazzy cover of Frank Ocean’s “Thinkin Bout You.” Here, Streight continued to display his prowess on guitar, making the instrument whine and moan with emotion in the instrumental breaks.
Streight’s responsiveness and musical chemistry with his drummer, Kenneth Boykins, was noticeable as they coordinated well throughout their time on stage. In fact, the way in which all of these musicians listened, responded, and had fun with one another made the set all the more enjoyable for the audience. The ensemble read the audience well and was able to bring up the pace just when the crowd seemed to slouch and was able to bring things down so that their vocals shined through at crucial moments. They were even able to coordinate at the end of the set when the crowd called for an encore. Though Elyse sat down for the last song, they showed an incredible amount of adaptability.
The band was at once both casual and up-scale with a tender jazzy sound that fit right in among the pictures of Jack Kerouac, Neal Cassady, and other jazz-age greats that adorned the walls of Alamo Drafthouse. The audience, too, seemed to slip effortlessly between casual observance and head bobbing intimacy.
Dylan Streight’s new single, “Desert Flower,” can be found on bandcamp.com along with some earlier work.