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Beat Connection have always been a band that has impressed me more in a live setting than in recorded form, an odd characteristic for a band that is often grouped alongside relatively tame live acts like Blackbird Blackbird, White Arrows and Lemonade. Whether performing at a tiny house party or the dance tent at a major festival, the trio never ceases to entertain with an endless supply of energy and enthusiasm. Unfortuantely, their recorded work, while bright at times, often lacks in the same departments. Enter Odesza, fellow Seattleites and sample patchwork impressarios. Last year, the duo (BeachesBeaches & CatacombKid) released the heavily slept on Summer’s Gone and, in the past few months (a few festival dates haven’t hurt), have garnered quite a bit of mass appeal. To kick off their upcoming West Coast tour with the aforementioned trio, Odesza have taken on remix duties for the Tune-Yards-channeling “Saola”, adding an oomph-worthy kick drum and scattering the vocals through a seductive filter/chop sequence. Like Summer’s Gone, the result isn’t exactly mind-blowing, but the duo have shown a penchant for turning out impossibly sunny jams in an over-saturated market, which is no small feat. Whether Odesza take their sound in a meatier direction will determine whether they eclipse their Northwest brethren or not.

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Beat Connection just dropped a new cut for us today off of their upcoming Palice Garden LP. The “Palace Garden, 4am” is the first official single for the LP. This is a killer track with otherworldly synths, upbeat bass, catchy vocals, and some interesting high frequency bird chirps…Give it a whirl and if you’re one of the lucky ones who can go to Sasquatch this weekend, get excited for some new material during their show! The album is set to come out on June 19th and for now, you can stream the single below.

Five weeks ago, the Sasquatch Music Festival lineup was released to much fanfare. Like all festivals, some hated the lineup while others loved it. For the more levelheaded, it appears to be a very balanced lineup with a deep undercard. From here on out we will be underscoring the lesser-known Sasquatch artists by highlighting a different artist each week. Beyond delving into each artist’s bio, sound, etc., we will attempt to give some insight into what will make their performance at Sasquatch so amazing.

If you are a Seattle native, attend or attended the University of Washington, or have spent anytime at house parties in the University District, chances are you have seen Beat Connection play at least once in one form or another. The duo, originally made up of Jordan Koplowitz and Reed Juenger, have been DJing and performing for around three years now and built an impressive level of notoriety in the Seattle music scene. Since their days on the UW party circuit, the band has gone through quite a few changes. In 2010, Jordan and Reed released their debut, the Surf Noir EP, with the help of friends Jarred Katz and Tom Eddy, both now members of the band. The EP quickly became a hit and Beat Connection began to play at various clubs and venues around the city. Eventually the blog world took notice and the EP took off. The band, now at four members, signed with UK label Tender Age and are currently prepping an album for a 2012 release date.
While their output to this point has been fairly minimal, the Surf Noir EP was an excellent debut and sounds even better live. Beat Connection’s sound falls somewhere between Beach House and LCD Soundsystem. That’s a ridiculously wide net to throw, but the band has shown that they can carry the torch for both driving punk-addled dance music and unassuming, tropical tunes. Reid and Jordan’s DJing days shine through on tracks like “In The Water” and their remix of Cosmic Revenge’s “Memories.” You can also tell that Reid and Jordan have spent some time on the decks based on how well Surf Noir flows. As good as each individual track sounds, the EP sounds remarkably smooth and complete from start to finish. As fun as the dance-floor oriented tracks are, the majority of Surf Noir gives off a completely different mood. Tracks like “Same Damn Time” and “Theme From Yours Truly” have a youthful vulnerability about them that belies the struggles of growing up.

Coming back to their penchant for rowdy live shows, Beat Connection should excel at Sasquatch. One of the few bands in the dance tent, they will most likely get an early time slot, but based on the crowd at Capitol Hill Block Party, people will come out for the show. It’s easier said than done, but Beat Connection just make people dance. It’s exultantly unpretentious dance music and it’s nearly impossible to hold back from jumping into the mass of sweaty kids. Beat Connection will be playing in the Banana Shack over Memorial Day weekend.

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It has been a while since the last Sounds From The Astral Plane. Don’t have much in the way of words for you today, but I will say that each one of these tracks are well worth your time/hardrive space. God damn Dark Sky always hits the spot. Mid terms are a bitch. Etc. Etc.

Stream/Download: fLako & Brokenchord – “Come Back As A Flower”

Stream: Beat Connection – “Think/Feel” Feat. Chelsey Scheffe

Stream: Eprom – “Regis Chillbin”

Stream: Dark Sky – “Totem”

Stream/Download: Clams Casino – “Swervin”