Kurt Travis / Hotel Books @ The Market On 7th – 11/22/14

There’s not too many national acts that play at The Market On 7th, but on November 22 there was a very special guest performing. Kurt Travis, formally of Dance Gavin Dance, a post hardcore band, and A Lot Like Birds, a progressive hardcore band which he is currently in. He took some time away to tour with his latest solo project “Everything Is Beautiful” from Cali to NY to a lovely stop in Tampa Bay.

The crowd was very slow, no more than 50 people showed up, but the show must go on.

Our photographer ran a little behind schedule, but some of the openers were Tampa locals Rising Down which had a smooth groove to them while the singer sung soulfully & deep. The other local was hard hitting high-energy kicking Samurai Shotgun whom lit up the stage with their wild stage presence.

For the tour openers Kurt brought along The Tommy Boys hailing from the Bay Area of Cali. The 3-piece carried themselves with great musicianship with a great prog sound.

Up next was a crowd favorite, Hotel Books representing Porterville,CA. With their indie post hardcore sound with spoken word. Poet/lyricist Cam Smith takes you deep with his personal relationships with girlfriends and past friends. He preaches with the passion and can feel his struggle as he spews his emotions to the crowd. Even when he is speaking positivity it can come off as depressing and get you in a not so great mood as even the guitars seem that they’re crying.

Kurt Travis set up for his main event spot, along side ex-band member Zachary Garren of Dance Gavin Dance. Through their time playing in DGD to the time they left, they have remained friends and worked on projects together. With Kurt on keys, vocals and guitar and Zach on guitar, they were definitely a two-man tag team of musical greatness. Kurt’s new album is very strong with a mix of acoustic, r&b, hardcore and pop, which he made blend beautifully. Each song with Kurt’s voice soaring over the instrumentation with grace, sounded on point to his album. Crowd favorites seemed to be “Too Loud/ Too Cold, Casting Dreams, It’s All Over, and Desperate”. Before “Desperate” they did a cover of “Love You Down” which went amazingly into it. Most of the younger kids had no idea what was happening, but the older people caught it and gave Kurt & Zach a round of applause. Even with a slow turn out and super relaxed atmosphere you could see the fans smiling and singing words to their favorite songs, because you know what? “Everything Is Beautiful”.


Photos by Ryan Lindquist