Electric Needle Room is Steven Beat on percussion and cowbell and Matt Beat on everything else. They are famously known as the first ever duo to play indie pop songs in a random street alley in Newton, Kansas.
It indeed did all begin in Kansas- Augusta, Kansas to be exact. ENR had modest beginnings under the moniker of Feedback in 1995. Matt began recording songs at the ripe age of 14. Some of these songs are the worst known to mankind, but they eventually became better. Throughout high school and college, Matt went on to record more than 150 songs, some of them good, most of them bearable, but all of them primitively recorded on his parents' karaoke machine. His brother, Steven, assisted him on some songs with percussion (which Matt definitely needed help on) to add some organic flavoring to the songs.
In early 2005, Matt invested in a multi-track recorder for his low-fi surprises. Thus, the songs began to sound better, and the songwriting had also gotten better since the early days. Steven joined the band full-time later that year to help Matt out with Beats. The brothers immediately decided they should not be living in the same city in order for the band to work, so Matt moved to Manhattan, KS and Steven to Kansas City. They currently split operations between Kansas City and Omaha.
ENR's debut full-length album, "My Socks Never Match," mostly a solo effort by Matt due to his ego, was released in November 2005 and has already went multi-platinum in Antarctica.
2006 was full of collaboration between Steven and Matt and some random stuffed animals in Matt's in-laws' basement. The result was some shows at places like The Replay Lounge in Lawrence (providing music for a puppet show), Oleavers Pub in Omaha, and numerous coffee shops and beverage establishments in Omaha and Kansas. Matt also wrote a couple songs inspired by paintings in a "contest" for a local museum in Omaha, and received much international recognition for his song "You Make Me Feel Sunny" by some dudes in Italy that Matt bugged to be friends with on Myspace.
The boys also found time to record their second album, entitled "Trying to Escape the Bigotry," a title Matt came up with after running into a few bigots here and there and everywhere, although not one song on the album even remotely mentions a bigot. Steven didn't care. He was just excited to try out is new multi-million-dollar electronic drum kit he had sold his soul for. It paid off- the new album sounded much more "professionally" produced than the first one, with Steven contributing to all but one of the songs this time around (although he significantly contributed to the mastering of the album).
The album was officially released on January 30th, 2007 to much disdain by the general hearing public.
In the summer of 2007, the band had the great fortune of bassist/vocalist Bryan Poole joining the band. He made the band, how do you say...good? Thus, the live shows played throughout the year in support of "Bigotry" began to sound bigger and better.
In October, Electric Needle Room released an EP called "Too Much Information Age," a themed album about the media and its strong influence on society.
2008 was another exciting year for the boys. They played two music festivals in Omaha, signed to Series Two Records, and began to get airplay on two local radio stations that no one listens to. Regardless, their fan base grew. In November, their third full-length, "Safe, Effective, and Fun" was released on Series Two Records. Daniel Lewis Diedrich also joined the band to help out with guitar and vocals for live performances.
In 2009, Electric Needle Room lost Daniel and Bryan to a wild pack of raccoons. However, Steven and Matt pressed on, releasing the strikingly controversial "It Just Came Out That Way EP."
Currently, Matt is in the process of recording a song about each of the 44 Presidents of the United States. The first volume, featuring songs about George Washington through James Buchanan, were released February 21st, 2011. Dave Thomas joined the band in January 2012 to help them play the President songs. The second volume, featuring songs about Abraham Lincoln through Herbert Hoover, were released February 20th, 2012.
The President songs were finally completed in early 2013, and the release of Volume 3 of the President songs, which featured Franklin D. Roosevelt through George W. Bush, greatly resonated with the mullet demographic.
2013 was an eventful year for the band, because it had many events. One such event was the release of a mockumentary that made fun of the band, which has yet to go viral on Youtube. Another such event was the recording of a new album. The album brought the much anticipated return of Steven Beat to the recorded drums- Matt sucks at synth drums. For a short while, Elijah Ringler joined the band on guitar, but he decided the band was lame, so promptly left for Emporia at the end of 2013.
Their seventh full-length album, "It's Getting Personal," was released on January 11th, 2014. Chris Huggard also joined the band on drums, but for some strange reason he has stuck around, perhaps because Matt gives him lots of lollipops. On August 5th, 2014, Matt released three songs with Pittsburgh's The Worsh Ahts on a split EP entitled "Uplifting Songs for the Downtrodden Heart." All proceeds of the EP will be donated to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
On February 6th, 2015, the band released its second split EP with DL Diedrich, entitled "We're 3.5 Years Ahead of Our Time." As it turns out, they were really about 13.5 years behind the times. Either way, of course very few heard the EP.