Most Bestest EP's 2015

March 31, 2016


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Seemed about time for another list since it's all the rage with the kids and their ADHD these days.  I can't blame 'em.  To cater even further to the attention-disabled crowd, this list is all about EP's.  Most of the works here are only going to set you back a few minutes to half an hour.  You can find full reviews for these in the "Bands" section.  So without further ado...

15 A Hymn of Disapointment See Details for A Hymn of Disapointment

From members of Abigail Williams, including Charlie Fell (Lord Mantis, Missing), rises a new black metal EP from the aptly-named Negative Mantra. With Charlie on drums, Jeff Wilson on guitar, and John Porada on vocals, bass, and guitar; these three songs are guaranteed to ruin your meditation/yoga session. With gusto.

14 Vast, Loathsome See Details for Vast, Loathsome

Blackened sludge band Drouth likes to layer, and the result feels like two tracks being played back to back: one harsh and grim, the other sad and doomy. It's like a simultaneous performance of Indian and Sonance.

13 Hatred Hell Within See Details for Hatred Hell Within

I was always caught off guard by the directions that Profanity's compositions take. So it's not only proficient, but also a bit disorienting. The subtle inclusions take things a step further as well, like the bells on the title track.  If you like death metal, or just crave all things technical, you should check out this EP today

12 aokigahara See Details for aokigahara

Not sure if this is technically an EP or not, but screw it. With this self-titled release of "dark psychodelia," Aokigahara have put another one to the books for excellent guitar work.  Mathy, djenty, progressive and full of technical challenge.  The musicianship and vocals bring to mind everything from Fall of Troy and a more melancholy Protest the Hero to The Mars Volta. The jazz influences cannot be denied, nor should they be ignored.

11 Hexmachine See Details for Hexmachine

Really, everything on False Flag's EP had me bobbing my head and tapping along. It's a solid effort, and make sure to stick around for the second half.  For fans of Botch, Norma Jean, and Converge.

10 Paroxysm See Details for Paroxysm

Good gravy, those vocals. Reminds me a bit of Gigan, but no matter how you slice it this guy is a death metal monster. This is, of course, Paroxysm by Plague Rider. The band is an experimental death quintet out of the UK. And in just 4 tracks clocking in about 20 minutes, they are here to slice you into itty bitty pieces.

9 All We Expected / Raum Kingdom Split See Details for All We Expected / Raum Kingdom Split

Raum Kingdom holds a special place in my heart. They were one of the 4 original purchases I made on Bandcamp while this site was still just a budding concept in my mind.  To put it lightly, this is great head-bobbing music. It's meditative without the pretentious bullshit that can come with that label. Each instrument in isolation is fairly simple, but how they are woven together is just masterful.

8 Unraveling See Details for Unraveling

Very personal blackened sludge from Thera Roya: "This EP represents the arduous experience which ensues during panic episodes, when mentally the conditions of life unravel within and I'm left recognizing calm energy flowing gently below the insane rubble of my human life."

7 Shock/Deny See Details for Shock/Deny

This is a lone walk through a dark, twisted forest. A gaze into the abyss. Deuil harken back to the early days of Burzum, where lengthy compositions were filled with equal parts malice and mystique. Not post-rock and meditative catharsis.  A landscape of groove-driven trudges and tremolo-blastbeat frenzies.

6 Barús See Details for Barús

Ever wonder what would happen if Meshuggah and Nero di Marte had a baby? Just me? Well the answer to my personal fan fiction is Barús. Throw in a dash of Triptykon and perhaps even a touch of Living Sacrifice's The Hammering Process and you have yourself a recipe for some truly unique progressive death metal.

5 The Book of Suffering- Tome 1 See Details for The Book of Suffering- Tome 1

The Book of Suffering will have you beating your town's 100 meter dash record repeatedly by the time you have played through these 17 minutes just once. The drums are your feet hitting the ground, the guitar the blood pumping through your veins, and the death growls the grisly death that awaits those who slow down. Don't. Ever. Slow. Down.  Cryptopsy rules.

4 #​!​%​16​.​7 See Details for #​!​%​16​.​7

Like Primus? Like Meshuggah? The aptly-named #!%16.7 is Ketha's 18 minute progressive sweet broken into several small movements opening with wonky basslines straight out of Sailing On The Seas Of Cheese and broadening scope into a thick crunch of groovy chords and harsh vocals. This is probably the weirdest thing you will hear today, but damned if it isn't tasty.

3 Opacities See Details for Opacities

Thankfully, here we are, nearly a decade since their last outing, and now Sikth are back and ready to crush the hype thanks to hard work and a crowd-sourcing campaign.  No words for how great this mathcore album really is.

2 Below The Hengiform See Details for Below The Hengiform

Fitting somewhere between the catchy, riff-driven ugliness of Lord Mantis and harrowing, technical death metal of Ulcerate; Malthusian knows how to walk the tightrope between solid hooks and challenging compositions.

1 Romantic Love See Details for Romantic Love

Make no mistake, there is nothing romantic about this Dendritic Arbor EP.  What genre is it? At times I feel like I am listening to a particularly grimy grindcore act, others I am thinking about black and death metal in the vein of Malthusian or Portal. Then they hit you with the occasional breather of straight ambient, even when the music is at its most vile. But it is absolutely this unlikely mash-up of styles that keeps me coming back for further beatings.