BEST EPs AND SONGS OF 2011
BEST LOCAL EPs
Emily (Wholly Roller): My favorite local EPs are Mood Rings - Sweater Weather Foreve, definitely the two from New Animal - Up! and Still in Mind, and Pillage & Plunder's debut EP, Look Inside for the Prize, is great.
Christina (Promising Chord): My favorites are in line with Emily’s. I have to say Pillage and Plunder’s Look Inside for the Prize is a must listen. New Animal is amazing at everything they release especially Still in Mind. Some other favorites are BOSCO’s Pacer EP and Big Jesus with their self-titled EP debut.
Denton (Little Advances): I'm powerless against the mood set by abundant use of Rhodes and jazz-inflected drumming on the debut EP from What Happened to Your Fire, Tiger?, which might be the most underrated local release of the year. Most of the disbanded Roman Photos reformed as Kolossi and took me by surprise with The Chase EP, an excellent progression of the atmospheric electronic pop pursued by their previous band. I also fell hard for the jangly pop jolt of Small Reactions' “Nerve Pop” 7”. I've got to agree with you guys on Sweater Weather Forever. What an introduction. The follow-up 7” is worth a listen, too.
Max (Paste Magazine): Not adding anything new with the Mood Rings or Small Reactions’ praise, but those were up there in this category for me too. Let’s not forget the unforgettable Reptar EP Oblange Fizz Y’all. They’ve turned our heads for a while, but their July release was technically their debut LP. While the Atlanta-Athens foursome has long impressed as performers, that five-song effort matched their live prowess.
Davy (Ohmpark): The two Cassandras EPs were phenomenal, as were both the Dark Room EPs. I love the We the Lion EP. The Small Reactions 7” is awesome. All of New Animal’s short releases are must-listens. The Time Wharp GRN EP is such a big record in such a tiny dose. On the ambient tip, I’d highly recommend Tree Witch’s Mintaka and The Electric Nature’s Drugs in Space. Also, a hat tip to Wowser Bowser‘s "Water Story" digital 7”, the Young Again’s I Woke Up Smiling, Faun and a Pan Flute’s I’m Not Prostitute, Mediocre Machine’s Chunk, BOSCO’s Pacer, Kinisi’s Islands, Exact Index’s Desire, Feast of Violet’s Linsen, From Exile’s Just Like You Imagined, and last but definitely not least, Places’ Cough Cough. Wow, there were so many good EPs.
Moe (Latest Disgrace): I don’t think I’m going to surprise anyone by putting Whores.’ Ruiner at the top of my list. Everything about it — it’s primal rage, its rhythmic intensity, it’s willfully abrasive and atonal underbelly — sits perfectly in my wheelhouse. And make no mistake, those fuckers know how to play and write songs that are dynamic and melodically engaging. Their music is ferociously heavy but still swinging. Admittedly, I like music that’s discomforting and maybe a little terrifying. Give me some loud, uncompromising, pigfuck brutality that’s looking to put a hurt on something and I’m happy.
Stepping away from the barrage of vitriol and distortion, I also really enjoyed Slowriter’s self-titled sophomore EP. The mix of indie pop and programmed beats is nothing new to say the least, but it’s convincingly done and Bryan Taylor clearly knows his way around a hook. Reaching back into the early part of the year, I still find myself turning to the Snowed in Sessions EP from Damon Moon and the Whispering Drifters. It may be a covers only effort, but they own all four of those songs and fill every second of that record with a sense of desolation and loneliness.
Other than that, I agree with Davy. So many great EPs and singles this year. Big Jesus’ debut EP was a definite standout, as was BOSCO’s Pacer, Kolossi’s The Chase, the Difference Machine’s “Psychology” digital 7,” Tree Witch’s Mintaka and Campaign’s Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice! Killer shit, all of it. I’m sure there’s a ton more I’m leaving out.
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