The founder of the Cloak & Dagger music festival Brennan Bryarly says he would never go mainstream with his events; and it's a philosophy that has kept him high on the echelon of musical tastemakers.

Do we really need more festivals in our lives? Honestly, it’s almost fall; can we just put them in storage for the rest of the season?

Absolutely not, says Brennen "option4" Bryarly, a sometimes-resident DJ and all the time show promoter. He and his team have been working hard lately pulling out bangers from the depths of their musical tastes to curate a Denver music festival unlike any other currently on the circuit.

Cloak & Dagger, taking place this Saturday, Sept 20, is one that rejects the monotonous lineups of other major festivals and proudly relishes in the excitement of the uncommon.

Grab a shovel; this weekend is about to get deep, deep underground.

“The most important thing is I never, ever want to do anything mainstream,” says Bryarly.

It’s a credo he’s stuck with since his days as a resident DJ at both the Beauty Bar and the now defunct NORAD dance club. Back during those times is when he was inspired to start a group called TheHundred. The concept would eventually morph into a show promotions company. It’s growth is reputable, as it’s gone from a once monthly affair to now a bustling events company that throws over a hundred solid shows per year statewide.

”People would laugh at us if we booked like a Tiësto or Martin Garrix,” he says. It’s a budget-blowing tactic that other larger festivals have become dependent on, and is something Bryerly himself despises and avoids when making selections for his events. He says that the Cloak & Dagger lineup was built in reverse of how other promoters may approach theirs.

“Instead of blowing our budget on a few popular headliners, I wanted to build it the opposite way. I want to start a festival from the ground up. Look at the festival circuit, it’s just rinse and repeat over and over. The 15 or 20 major festivals in the U.S. all are just so unbelievably incestuous. Those are acts we don’t really want anything to do with, it’s not our thing.”

Going for the “slam dunk up front,” he says, won’t cater to the discovery of new artists he fell for years ago, and doesn’t facilitate the healthy music scene that he works so hard to progress.

“We want to keep it to what we believe in, and that’s super relevant music,“ says Bryerly. “The main thing is that we do want to grow, but we want to grow in an organic way.”

The Cloak & Dagger festival, he says, has an ultimate goal of being able to do the same exact thing as major festivals, but with a low budget and affordable tickets.

Supporting that philosophy is how his team lined up the performing locals. Instead of tossing the hometown artists in at early hours and having them foot most of the legwork for promotions, they will be on a stage where they can go up against the larger drawing acts. It’s planned to be in an area that will provide a type of in-house crowd, he says, because of the proximity to the food trucks and other provided chill out spots.

Tickets for the event are still available on and range from a $40 general admission price to a $75 VIP. The exclusive ticket price comes with special viewing areas and booze related perks. Tickets go up in price tomorrow (Friday) and again on the day of the show (Saturday).


City Hall – Amphitheatre

5:00 – 6:00     Black Jordan
6:00 – 7:00     Insightful
7:00 – 8:15     POMO
8:15 – 9:30     Kidnap Kid
9:30 – 10:45     Sango
10:45 – 12:15     Cashmere Cat

City Hall – Street Level Stage/Main Hall

6:00 – 7:00     Keepers.
7:00 – 8:00     Golf Clap
8:00 – 9:15     Thomas Jack
9:15 – 10:30     Gigamesh
10:30 – 12:00     Moon Boots
12:00 – Close     Holy Ghost DJ Set

City Hall – Cue’s Room

6:00 – 7:00     Iowno
7:00 – 8:00     Marcelo Moxy
8:00 – 9:00     Real Cosby
9:00 – 10:00     Ill-Esha
10:00 – 11:00     Dawn Safari vs Snubluck
11:00 – 12:00     Evoke
12:00 – 1:00     Action52
1:00am – Close     Samples

Club Vinyl – Main Floor

6:00 – 7:00     Need & Necessity
7:00 – 8:00     GRAFF
8:00 – 9:15     Homework
9:15 – 10:30     Martyn
10:30 – 12:00     Midland
12 – Close     Justin Martin