Live Reviews: Kyle Dion

Soho House  - Los Angeles, CA

Contact: Mikaela Duhs, mduhs@shorefire.com

Web: kyledion.co

Players: Kyle Dion, vocals; Aabo Bortz, bass; Dustin Coon, guitar

Material: After two years of work on his latest record, Kyle Dion returned to the stage with fresh, fun music, delivering an impeccable six-song set at Soho House in Los Angeles. Showcasing material from his new album, Sassy, as well as a reboot of “Brown” from 2019’s Suga, Dion performed a set of laid-back R&B, combining neo-soul with edgy lyrics, adding in rap, reggae and pop elements while showing a bolder, unfiltered side of himself.

Musicianship: With synthesized tracks and vox machine backups to round out the sound from the trio on stage, upbeat show opener “I Could Be Your Girlfriend” delivered solid falsetto vocals and a cheeky storyline. “Pink Mink” followed, bringing after-hours bedroom vibes with lyrics touching on the addiction of toxic romance, with melodic lines and melismas that highlighted Dion’s tremendous vocal control and overall ability. Aabo Bortz delivered solid bass lines alongside Dustin Coon’s strong guitar playing throughout the set, and the two were well matched––delivering the perfect backdrop for Dion’s show, musically and energetically.

Performance: While the venue felt relaxed and comfortable, there was an eager excitement in the room well before the show began. Dion’s approachable, genuine persona and grounded stage presence (particularly during the most poignant lyrical moments) proved his ability to command attention, while maintaining a connection with each of his fans as he sang. By his third song, “Parmesan” (a self-confessed inaugural foray into rap), the venue was standing room only, with the majority in attendance swaying to the beat and singing along. The recurring “Maxwell vibes” had all in attendance captivated by the delivery of each word and note, while “Money” had the crowd singing along in harmony. 

Summary: Clearly passionate about his work, Kyle Dion is a master performer committed to exquisite vocal delivery. Having done the work to develop his natural talents and understand his audience, Dion shows confidence as an artist, while remaining relatable, relaying his lyrics in a conversational, energetic exchange. Strong vocals, punchy fun lyrics, and an R&B pop vibe combined for an entertaining evening in a comfortable, open atmosphere. The perfect vibe and music for a fun night out with friends.