Students form alternative rock band to showcase musical talent


Photo courtesy of Nick Townsend and Evan Kieser

“The Kings Company” members Nick Townsend and Evan Kieser get together for band practice. The two practice three to four times a week for three hours.

LeAnne Bugay, Features Editor

Teenagers need self-expression. Some use art, some use writing, and some use photography as an outlet and as a means to display their creativity. Junior Evan Kieser and senior Nick Townsend use music.

Kieser and Townsend make up the band “The Kings Company”. The drums are played by Townsend while Kieser sings and plays guitar.

“We’re a two-piece,” Kieser said. “So to fill the sound of the room we need to play loud.”

The two play alternative rock because it allows them to freestyle and the style works with how they want to be understood. For Kieser, the Arctic Monkeys have been a huge inspiration. Townsend credits Earl Sweatshirt and Vince Staples as influences despite being rappers.

“I’ve always watched other people I know and my dad’s friends that are in a band,” Kieser said.

Kieser began his interest in music in fourth grade after his parents bought him a PS2 for Christmas that had Guitar Hero on it. After mastering the video game, the real instrument was his.

“It’s been eight years since I got a guitar and started playing music,” Kieser said. “I’m self-taught from YouTube.”

Townsend picked up drumming several years ago has wanted to start a band for about six years. Coincidentally, Kieser had a dust-collecting set of drums in his basement.

“I never wanted to play drums,” Kieser said. “But I got them so someone else could play them.”

Because both had known each other for a few years, it was easy for Kieser to tell Townsend about the drums he owned. Soon after they started jamming and connecting their talent.

“In middle school we wore the same shirt one day,” Kieser said. “It’s a Ron Burgundy shirt that says ‘I’m kind of a big deal’. We still have the shirts. I’ve known him since then, but we didn’t talk for a while. I always knew he was a drummer. Then he hit me up and we kinda formed a band.”

Since then, Kieser and Townsend have formed a tight-knit bond through creating music together.

“We were both musicians and not really doing anything,” Townsend said. “so we were like hey, let’s put our music ability to use.”

Because of sports and activities, Kieser and Townsend came up with a solution to their strained availability: create some of their rhythms solo.

“We talk about it, so when we get together we’re not just blank on what to do,” Kieser said. “We practice non-stop by ourselves.”

Kieser usually thinks of a riff and sends it to Townsend, who then comes up with a drum part. When they get together to practice, the two add in lyrics and record.

“Evan just kinda freestyles and I join in,” Townsend said.

The idea to name their band ‘The Kings Company’ came easily.

“Nick T. always comes around and says ‘sup king’ so we had ‘king’, and then we did a random word generator and found ‘company’, so then we had ‘The Kings Company’,” Kieser said.

So far “The Kings Company” has released three songs titled “House”, “Darling”, and “The Come Up” on their SoundCloud profile, along with sharing them on their Twitter (@theking_company).

“When I put our first song out on Twitter we got a lot of retweets,” Kieser said. “People were loving it.”

Now that the duo has put out a few songs and gained a small following, they’re looking into booking shows. Eventually Kieser and Townsend want to perform in front of large audiences or open for popular artists.

“We’d both like to play in outdoors festivals and open for other bands,” Kieser said. “We’ll just work as hard as we can so we can play more gigs for people.”

“The Kings Company” will be performing at Barley Street Tavern on Dec. 15 and are waiting on  a date for their show at Sozo Coffeehouse. Both know that their friends and family will come to support, especially since several of them have been waiting for this moment for a long time.

“My family, they’ve always known I’ve wanted a band for a while, so they’re all pretty happy for me,” Kieser said.