We started with 7″ records – now we’re going to focus on EP’s. Right below are the top ten EP’s that came out over the year of 2010, as told by the Styrofoam Drone. We didn’t cover EP’s nearly as often as we covered other formats of music this year, but there were still enough so we could make this fairly decent list out of them. Not only that, but compiling these lists is a great way to look back on an entire year of music and see what caught on the most, what you forgot about, and simply what you liked best. After over a year of checking out new music, you tend to forget about some things in the middle of all the madness. The end of the year is the time to let those releases you forgot about shine. So here you have it, our top ten EP’s of 2010:
A good place to start would be the list of Honorable Mentions. While the EP’s included on this were still highlights from the year, they didn’t quite register like the rest of the EP’s below in the countdown. Here goes nothing:
Top Surprise – Everything Must Go EP
Label: Pug Records
Top Surprise hail from Brazil, and they don’t beat around the bush. Alarmingly loud and possibly headache inducing, these songs sound as concentrated as can be. Not too sure what can expect from 2011, but there’s bound to be something.
The Samps – The Samps EP
Label: Mexican Summer
This one-off project (?) from the sometimes-guitarist of Ariel Pinks Haunted Graffiti totally came out of nowhere this year and forced you to get up and dance – no matter how much they insisted they had no idea what they were doing. The only question is whether or not we’re gonna hear more of these hazy acid-induced dance beats come 2011.
Banned Books – Man Maker EP
These fast paced freak rockers from South Jersey can go from ridiculousness to subtlety in less than three seconds. Totally dynamic and definitely jaw dropping, this frenzy of songs comes off as aggressive and rigid as possible.
Tammar – I Live Here Now EP
Label: St. Ives
These wobble-pop pioneers do their own unique thing out in the middle of the country in Indiana, and nobody else seems to take on their sort of experimental pop. They seem to keep quiet for the most part, but we’re still looking forward to some new material come 2011. This was also the only live EP we covered all year.
Javelin – 2 EP
Label: Thrill Jockey
A great year for Javelin it was. This cousinly duo released a full length on Luaka Bop and had a few EP’s released on Thrill Jockey (one which came out in 2009). This cut comes from the 2nd of their two EP’s, and it’s a scary-good kind of “in-the-club” collage that’s so rad that only Javelin could possibly achieve. The name of the track is spot-on well: Beyondcé.
Superhumanoids – Urgency EP
Label: Hit City USA
Later entries can certainly qualify for greatness. We covered this EP like seven days ago but it deserves a spot on this list without a doubt. Carefully constructed and focused pop songs straddling the line of electronics and instrumentation with a blissful, mysterious atmosphere means this stuff is tops. These guys appear to be in the works for something to come in 2011, so let’s keep our fingers crossed.
Games – That We Can Play EP
Label: Hippos in Tanks
“Strawberry Skies” on it’s own is enough send you through a loop – once it gets a firm grasp on your ears, it’s never letting go. Add in a bunch of other great futuristic dance-gems like “Shawdows in Bloom” and “Planet Party” (not to mention those killer remixes) and you’ve easily got one of our favorite EP’s of 2010.
DOOMSTAR! – Rainbow Bloodsucker EP
Label: Grandma and Grandpa Records
DOOMSTAR! are also part of that ever-expanding scene that is growing in Boston as we speak. These guys totally rock out with no boundaries whatsoever, and here is the ultimate proof. You see!? Do yourself a huge favor and keep an eye out for DOOMSTAR! in 2011. It’s still early on for these three guys, but they should definitely not be forgotten.
Double Dagger – Masks EP
Label: Thrill Jockey
This is exactly why we do the end of the year lists. Angry and pissed off, this Double Dagger EP came out awhile ago in the beginning of 2010, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be included on our list. Nolen Strals is trying to make a statement, and him and Double Dagger get their point across with more anger and frustration than any other band out there. You can feel the strain in the music and in Strals vocals from beginning to end. A near 20 minutes of angry post-punk perfection. “Sleeping With the TV On” could be one of the most thrilling and most dynamic songs from any like-minded band this year.
Twin Sister – Color Your Life EP
Label: Infinite Best Recordings
Twin Sister released their second EP this year, and subsequently blew up across the music universe. No other record that came out this year has the same dazed-out, dream like textures that are found from beginning to end on this splendid EP. This group of friendly Long Islanders have dug up quite a unique sound, making these guys without a doubt one of our most watched acts going into 2011. It’s not clear yet what Twin Sister will have in store for us, but if it’s anything like this wild adventure through Andrea Estella’s wacky dream-scapes, it’s bound to be killer.
That does it for our list of EP’s. Check back in another couple days and we’ll have a list of our favorite full length albums from 2010. See ya then.