Extended plays are probably the best way of showcasing new material and new projects in today’s’ music business. As we managed to get down to our twenty favorite short albums of the year, we couldn’t be happier to see so many new secrets standing out. For your delight, listen away, these are our twenty mini-wonders of 2016.
20. JMR – Ritual
Thumping bass and drums, sweet vocals and easy winning falsettos set the mood for an 18+ playground. 2016 was a lot of fun thanks to the surprisingly good and sexy as hell Ritual.
HONNE released so many quality songs between 2015 and 2016, that when Gone Are The Days was extended as a special imported EP available through Spotify, we consumed it with absolutely no restrictions. If songs like Gone Are The Days and 3am were surprisingly good, adding to it a duo like the one in No Place Like Home simply made this (rare) extended play an absolute favorite of ours.
NAO’s second EP was our first ever EP review, and it was jaw-dropping good. Songs like Apple Cherry and Golden revealed her pure magic of songwriting. After February 15th, she exploded as one of 2016 best breakthrough artists, and that’s why this could not be left out of our top 20.
What The Lovely Days have accomplished in their debut EP, was something very rare. Self-produced and self-penned, this self-titled EP sounded like a seamless combination of vocal harmonies, honest lyrics, strong beats and a leading-to-happiness guitar. This is one to treasure for years to come.
16. Tender – EP III
TENDER was the most impressive band of the year for us. And the fact that both EPs released this year feature in this list is just a small demonstration of that. The second one to be released (and their third ever) was convincing, brutal and smooth. Five obligatory songs and nowhere where to go wrong. Violently good.
Keep Counting is simply contagious and will make you sing from the top of your lungs. This indietronic meets the 80’s still sounds current and refreshingly unique! You’ll find yourself stuck in traffic and out of the bloom feel re-energized and motivated as soon as you start hearing the heavy (yet incredibly subtle) bass and happy electronic piano. This is exactly the kind of vibe we want to carry on through to 2017.
Ain’t No Use EP is a 4-track wonder that includes both the title track and Nothing Less adding to them two new beautiful and more sentimental tracks entitled Styrofoam and If You Forget Me. If in his own words, 2016 was about putting out material while still developing his sound. In ours, this half indietronic, half emotional RnB is fully perfect.
Side II is an eletronic master-piece, with every song doing it’s own thing: Elixir extended the duo melodramatic side with raging beats like a danceable shot of emotions. STC (interval training) is like the name itself a short break for breath. And Bloodsucker is quirky and melodically fulfilling. The raging and brutal Burger (Stormy Weather) was among the most interesting pieces of eletro-pop produced this year.
Combining the raw sound of acoustic electric guitars, and a really uncommon vocal range and tone, Tash Sultana is one of this year most exciting and unique new prospects in alternative music. In Notion, every guitar riff, vocal exclamation and sample mixed sounds too good and too effortless to be true.
11. Her – Her Tape #1
We may have missed to post about some incredible new acts that appeared throughout the year. But one thing we could not forget is to mention the power behind Her debut EP. This four-track filled with groove and spectacular twists came out in the beginning of 2016 and accompanied us during the rest of the year. If Five Minutes almost made it into our top songs of the year, its whole dizzy-wondrous vibe is also spammed across the other songs. Quite Like is a proper groovy electronic start, while Union is a sexy contemplative urban hymn.