Bryce Avary is the brains behind North Texas-rooted band The Rocket Summer. He'll be at Trees soon to celebrate the 10th anniversary of his breakthrough record, "Do You Feel."

Bryce Avary is the brains behind North Texas-rooted band The Rocket Summer. He'll be at Trees soon to celebrate the 10th anniversary of his breakthrough record, "Do You Feel."

Ben Zucker/Courtesy

Bryce Avary admits he's not great at reflecting on the past. As the brains behind North Texas-rooted band The Rocket Summer, Avary is "in such a perpetual state of moving forward," he rarely stops to notice how much time has gone by.

The pop-punk musician is making an exception this summer, however, by taking his 2007 album Do You Feel on a 10th anniversary tour across America. He stops for a concert at Trees in Dallas on Friday, July 21.

What prompted a change in heart?

The album "largely helped solidify this special community amongst our fans," says Avary, a Grapevine High School alum. "It's kinda cool to celebrate what was a pivotal record amongst our own fanbase ... it was big in its own little way."

The Rocket Summer: Do You Feel 10 Year Anniversary Tour

Looking back has been an exercise all its own, but it's also caused Avary to revisit some songs from Do You Feel that he's never played live before. In fact, he's never done about half of the album in concert, including the melodic and malaise-ridden "Waiting," for which the multi-instrumentalist is relearning a harmonica solo.

"It's kind of like you're breakdancing and you drop down and do the splits and you've got one foot forward and one back and jazz hands in the air — that's kinda how we're treating the tour," Avary says. "It's like looking forward and looking back at the same time."

Many of the record's themes still resonate with Avary, even though he wrote it when he was 23 years old. Thinking back, he was a local kid who found his big break: Do You Feel was the first album he recorded in a classic studio setting and released with a major label. Avary felt free from his days sleeping on the floor of an isolation booth to be able to afford the studio time. He remembers Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor and the legendary Joe Cocker recording in other rooms nearby.

"There's just such an uncanny hope within those songs that I still relate to today," he says. For example, the title track tackles a restlessness to overcome obstacles and make the world a better place.

"Everything was so magical," he says. "I saw songs in everything I looked at."

Ten years, six albums and several tours across the world later, Avary still credits his Dallas-Fort Worth roots with enabling him to live his dream. The hometown show at Trees will be especially meaningful, he says, because that's where The Rocket Summer played its first gig when he was a teenager. The venue hosted a birthday party for The Adventure Club, a radio show on the now-defunct 102.1 The Edge, where The Rocket Summer shared a bill with the Polyphonic Spree, Lift to Experience, and Chomsky. 

"I was just so bright-eyed and unbelievably enamored to be around all these local heroes," he says.

In addition to hearing the full Do You Feel album, Avary promises fans a mix of tunes reaching as far back as Calendar Days and as recently as his new single "Gone Too Long," which dropped on July 7. In any event, he expects the show will be one he remembers for the next 10 years.

"Hometown shows, there's always a different kind of magic in the air," Avary says. "I always feel a bit of debt to Dallas-Fort Worth, so the best thing I can do is put on the best show I can."

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