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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

King and Nation’ waxes philosophical about band origin

 
 

Their style can range from upbeat, get-up-and-dance songs to more low-key tunes. Self-described as “indie garage rock,” King and Nation produces a unique sound right out of College Station.
The group originally consisted of three Aggie students – Frank Miller, Sam Brinkman and Austin Davis. After attending several of their performances, Aaron Gonzales, Class of 2013, approached the band and joined as a drummer in September 2013.
Gonzales was set to graduate in December 2013 and had a job offer, but was unsure about his decision to take the offer. Gonzales said he had received the offer before meeting the band.
“I’d been reading a lot of Keirkegaard and the existentialists and watching a lot of videos of Dave Grohl and Ace Enders,” Gonzales said. “They talked about how music was something worth pursuing with your whole heart and soul and I told myself that if the opportunity presented itself, I’d chase after it with everything I had.”
When he met Miller, Brinkman and Davis, it was only a week and a half until they had their next show
in Austin.
“I learned the songs and we just clicked,” Gonzales said. “A week later I decided to change my entire
life around.”
Gonzales took the job, but dedicates much of his time to King and Nation. He said the decision to pursue music is worth it, regardless of the outcome.
worth it, regardless of the outcome.
“The choice was mine to stay,” Gonzalez said. “If it doesn’t work out, I can’t complain because I made the choice and it was worth the shot.”
The band’s name was based on some of Danish philosopher S?ren Kierkegaard’s writings, whom Gonzalez studied.
“Kierkegaard’s idea was the choices that you make as a person make the person who you become,” Gonzalez said. “You can either base them off of God, your family and community or yourself. So the ‘King and Nation’ is like the two competing ideals in your life, either yourself or God, or the community that you surround yourself with. It’s all about how you create yourself.”
The band’s drummer, Travis Knight, senior humanities major, joined in January 2014 when Gonzalez moved to guitar. Brinkman, guitarist and sophomore psychology major, said the band in its present form has a cohesive and dynamic mentality.
“The first time we all got together and played, we just looked at each other and thought, ‘Wow, this sounds really good,'” Brinkman said.
Miller, lead singer and junior English major, said as students the members are keen on balancing time. The band practices every week at a scheduled time for four hours and before every show.
Miller said the group would like to make it big and plans to record a five-song EP to have out in May titled “Spaces.”
“We are hoping to make it,” Miller said. “We’re not trying to be rock stars, but if that works out then that’s fine with me.”
Gonzalez said the band will record a demo this weekend in Fort Worth, where they also have a show Sunday. He said touring for the band would be a dream.
“We talk about wanting to tour all the time,” Gonzalez said. “If we could do it full time right now, we’d all jump at the opportunity.”
The band writes and performs many of its own original songs, with Miller writing most of the lyrics. He said many of the songs are based on his experiences and those of the band members.
Davis, bassist and sophomore business major, said some songs have more spontaneous origins.
“We also have a few songs where we kind of throw random words together,” Davis said. “We’ll be like, ‘Let’s try to make a song where everybody thinks we’re trying to be really deep, but it is just nonsense.'”

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