For a while there, it felt like the music of Gabriel Garzón-Montano would be one of the best-kept secrets for fans of progressive soul. That’s no longer the case: With a sold out crowd packing out the Troubadour for Garzón-Montano’s first-ever headlining show in Los Angeles on May 11, it’s clear that the secret has gotten out.
Fortunately, Garzón-Montano is ready for the spotlight. The rich grooves of his outstanding new album Jardín came to life on the Troubadour’s intimate stage, even with the spartan arrangement of just Garzón-Montano and his drummer. Between his solo turns at the mic, Garzón-Montano flashed his musical prowess with a keyboard setup that saw him performing the deep synth bass with his left hand and pearly rhodes with the right.
Above it all, Garzón-Montano’s talents as a singer and songwriter shone through. His saucy croon sounded particularly crisp on songs like “Fruitflies” and “Crawl” and even on minimalist cuts like “Six Eight” -- which Drake notably sampled on “Jungle” -- the utter silence of the crowd betrayed their rapture.
Based on his L.A. performance, it’s clear that Gabriel Garzón-Montano is ready to level up in his career. Practically speaking, that means you should check him out on his current small-venue tour; like the big red balloon he sings about on “Crawl,” Garzón-Montano is blowing up.
Click here for tickets to Garzón-Montano’s June 3 performance at The Sinclair in Cambridge, Mass. and check out a slideshow of his L.A. concert above.