Through @ 2 With Beat Connection: Truant Youth, Sweet Beats

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Angel Ceballos /
The Situation I'm cozied up at Sun Liquor testing a variety of beers with the fresh-faced and affable Reed Juenger and Jordan Koplowitz of the electronic duo Beat Connection.

The two met as UW freshmen two years ago and started discussing music one night while playing beer pong at a frat party (really)--"We were like, 'Oh, you like music too? Oh, sick, we're gonna be friends,' " recalls Koplowitz, who, it has to be said, looks exactly like Mad Rad's P Smoov. They've been making sweet beats together ever since.

How They Got Here School's already out for the summer, kind of--the two are taking this spring quarter off. "I don't want to be an art-school dropout," Juenger says. "That's what I am right now." That means that while their friends are hitting class, the two spend their days at the U District house they share with seven other dudes, doing band things like trying to find a manager. (It only recently occurred to them that they might need one.)

I ask them what else they do besides music. Blank faces.

"We brew our own beer!" says Koplowitz--they spent the afternoon bottling their newest batch. It occurs to me that this hobby goes along with the fact that until recently, purchasing beer wasn't an option for them.

"What are the cool bars in town?" they ask me. I feel like the oldest person they know.

Shop Talk Beat Connection's jetting off to Europe next month for a spate of concerts, including a couple of dates with Toro Y Moi and Niki and the Dove. It's an impressive schedule, considering that the duo's only played about 20 shows since their inception.

This month Tender Age Records will re-release Beat Connection's Surf Noir EP. That EP's two standout tracks--the rapturous "In the Water" (which has already received raves from Pitchfork) and the sublime, slow-pulsing "Silver Screen"--feature some lovely vocalizing that neither band member can take credit for; it's their roommate Tom Eddy. Eddy won't be joining the band; for the record, he dislikes electronic music, referring to it as "robot music."

BTW Beat Connection's got a flashy setup--live, Koplowitz plays synth, guitar, sampler, and drum machine while Juenger DJs the backing tracks and plays keyboard and sampler. "If you look at Reed's table, there's like 90 different lights blinking at all times," says Koplowitz.

That means Wednesday night's Laser Dome light show should make for a dazzlingly opulent event. "We want to make things special for people who come to our shows," says Juenger, "Fun things that are more than just a show."

Beat Connection is playing a laser light show with U.S.F. at the Laser Dome this Wednesday, April 13. It's all-ages, tickets are $5, and it all starts at 9 p.m.

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