The atmosphere at the Holy Kimoto and Heavy Pets show was extremely special and filled with so much love and beauty. I met so many kind souls and ran into so many old friends. Just a night of sharing love and energy.
After the Heavy Pets got done playing an incredible set of music, we were all ready for the debut performance of Holy Kimoto. They started with an interesting groove, and early on I recall thinking I had not heard anything that sounded like this.
Michael Travis (EOTO, The String Cheese Incident, Zilla, PRAANG) began on bass and switched from bass, to keys, hand percussion, computers. It was clear that Travis was the mastermind behind the operation and obviously the band leader.
This was an interesting surprise to me, given this band has Steve Kimock (Steve Kimock Crazy Engine, PRAANG, and Zero to name a few), Kyle Hollingsworth (The String Cheese Incident, Kyle Hollingsworth Band), and Jason Hann (EOTO and The String Cheese Incident).
The first set provided many danceable grooves and by the end of the first set, we were all ready for some fresh air and water. Everyone in my group was very pleased to ecstatic about the music they had heard. The second set began very strongly, with Hollingsworth setting a nice tone with his organ work. As the set wore on, I started to get somewhat bored with it. Instead of progressing and getting deeper in their grooves, it seemed to me that they were hardly slowing down the music at all and were remaining in that familiar electronic, EOTO sounding groove for too long. I wished that they had taken more chances and stepped outside of this familiar zone. The music picked back up when Kimock was allowed to take over with a mellow, yet powerfully psychedelic groove. The encore built more off that beauty. It was relatively down tempo and Kyle really shone with some nice organ work.
It seemed to me that the band has not gelled together yet. Travis and Hann seemed to be very high energy, while Kimock and Kyle were rather subdued and had a more laid back energy, just sharing in the groove (mostly Travis' grooves) and waiting for their turn. This show had moments of brilliance on more than one occasion, but there were also several lulls in the action when it was just constantly fast electro grooves. If they learned to ground the music more, taking flight again in that electro space would be much more impactful and meaningful. With Kyle and Kimock's backgrounds, some jazzier styles would have been a great fitó at least to my ears. It was only their first show, So I would assume they can only get better.
If I had my way, I would subdue Travis' dominant personality a little bit and let Kimock and Kyle soar and have more interplay between them, because Kyle and Kimock are truly among the best at what they do. Hann is always steady. Travis is very skilled at what he does, but he hasn't been a master of this electronic landscape he tries to create nearly as long as Kimock has been a master of the 6 string guitar or Kyle has been a master of the ivories. All in all a good show, but I would just like them to slow it down a bit more, find space and psychedelia outside of a "techno" place, play some more jazz styles, and just let Kyle and Kimock do what they do best.