photos by: top left; Darren Kelly (@dkfatbeatz via Instagram), bottom left; Jeff Crespi (@jeffcrespirocks via Instagram), right; Angelica (@luna.ap.photography via Instagram)
Dylan McLarnon is quite the mysterious fellow, seemingly cool-headed- the kind that leaves you wondering and looking for what goes on inside. He grew up in Monmouth County, NJ, but after moving out of his family’s home and in with his significant other, he feels like he’s had the opportunity to become the person he’s always wanted to be. He’s groovy and may appear off in the clouds, but has this reassuring smile and sedating voice that lets you know everything is understood. He’s kind in nature and works incredibly hard; working forty hours a week and belonging to two full-time bands, but still finds time for it all and then some.
He’s the eccentric lead singer and guitarist to The Red Room, as well as the bassist for The Black Clouds and features on Clutch Cabin. His natural inclination for music has never left him empty. They go hand in hand and have for as long as he can remember. “I look back at 11 year-old me, who was so full of optimism, and reassure him.” He was born for this- quick and efficient, catching on quickly to whatever is put in front of him and figuring things out instantaneously in his head. “Sometimes I’ll write a riff and be like, ‘How did I do this?’ I don’t even know how to read music. I do things by ear.” A good listener, indeed. And as for the lyrics, he rhymes words to one central idea. Even without music theory, he is fantastic at making everything come together in harmony.
The performance aspect of music is where Dylan feels most involved with his craft. “I love the idea of uniting a room of individuals.” The audience is free to transform and transcend past the outside world into a realm where they feel they can belong. Those concerts are where the magic is- a whole room of different people exploring the vibrations of a song he created. He wants to connect to the crowd, to those who have felt as lost or depressed as he, and to those who simply just want to have a good time. That stage is the same place he feels like he can truly let go. It’s the only time he’s able to tap into that part of himself and explode with such present passion. And all the time spent away from performing is just preparing for those little bursts of emotion.
If it were up to him, he’d be out on the road every day of the year. But at the moment, love for this dream is not enough to surpass paying the bills. You have to keep one foot in reality and one foot in the dream, but the possibility of switching the two is what keeps him going.