Shorter albums and EPs are actually a great marketing strategy in 2018. Release a handful of songs, and do it more often to keep peoples attention (pretty much the opposite of my last list). Some bands have some great material they want out there either starting out or just between full albums as well. These fifteen EPs covers a great amount of ground in the rock and metal fields. Let's see if these short tastes of bands pique your interest enough to give them a full change.
15.) Depths of Hatred- Bloodguilt
FFO- Technical Death Metal, Deathcore
A rather shocking discovery for me filled with brutal intensity and melodic songwriting paired in perfect fury. It's great to hear music this technical and heavy with melody and harmony behind it, making it stand out from the crowd. For fans of Cryptopsy, Arsis, and Misery Index. You will be sure to enjoy this EP in all it's glory.
14.) Progenie Terrestre Pura- Starcross
FFO- Industrial Black Metal, Post Black Metal
A mindblowing combination of genres that work so well together. Imagine the band Mechina, but more blackened instead of death metal driven. Just a fantastic listen through space and time, as beautiful as it is terrifying. A perfect band to expand your musical horizons.
13.) Witch Casket- Punishment
Blackened Death Metal, Melodic Death Metal
Should note that this band also released another EP this year, Hatred Index, which is equally fantastic, but I picked this one as it is newer and, I feel a bit more of what the band is truly capable of. A fantastic blend of chaos, evil, metal, and outrageously good songwriting. The songs are straight to the point and filled with the melodic brutality we all need sometimes. If you want some melodic brutality as stated a sentence ago, check this one out.
12.) Ostraca- Enemy
FFO- Shoegaze, Hardcore, Screamo
Such a crazy combination of music that truly works. If you want a crazy mashup of Deftones, Converge, The Smiths and AFI, this is it. It gets super down trotted and at the turn of a time goes into the chaotic hardcore you never see coming and then super melancholic . A great combination and a band to look out for.
11.) Marxthrone- A Blaze in the Western Sky
FFO- Black Metal, Socialism
The only reason this isn't up higher is because of how recent this released. I still can't really tell if this is taking the piss out of the world right now, a knock at a band like Neckbeard Deathcamp, or a black metal band that really thinks Democratic Socialism works. Regardless, this EP is filled with such great nods to classic 80s and 90s Black Metal while forging their own path with their (parody or not) message. Politics aside the music is great and worth checking out for that alone.
10.) Goliathan- Albion
FFO- Instrumental Blackened Post Rock
What a great release from Metal Assault Records. This band releasing this EP showcases everything the band is capable of, with evil sounding riffs, tons of atmosphere and songs that keep you interested from beginning to end. I can't give it a better description than that, they are very much worth your time.
9.) Conception- My Dark Symphony
FFO- Symphonic Metal, Progressive Metal
Roy Kahn has returned with Conception and the world of music is better for it. These tracks are so perfect for Kahn's amazing voice, maintaining the fantastic songwriting of Kamelot, but instead of power metal, going prog instead. The songs are super catchy and filled with dark joy, I expected nothing less and leave every listen of the EP completely satisfied.
8.) Fractal Cypher- Prelude to an Impending Outcome
FFO- Modern Progressive Metal
This EP is sheer brilliance from beginning to end. Combining so many great elements of melody, harmony, technical ability, and vocal delivery makes this a band you simply need to check out if you are a prog fan of any kind. You will find something to enjoy here, guaranteed.
7.) Neckbeard Deathcamp- White Nationalism is For Basement Dwelling Losers
FFO- Grindcore, Crust Punk, Anti- Trump
If you haven't gathered from this point, I do enjoy me some left wing views and left wing extreme music. Neckbeard Deathcamp has been making the rounds as of late for their name and lyrical content (I wonder why...?) but they also match their controversial lyrical content with fantastically made extreme music. Is it a novelty? time will tell. Till then I love what I hear and I really hope even better things are to come.
6.) Dead Now- Dead Now
FFO- Early Day Torche
The FFO pretty much sums it up. While being different enough to stand out, Dead Now covers the sludgy, poppy, doomy, dreamy styles that early day Torche albums cover so very well. Don't get me wrong they are their own band, but it is so great to hear this style of music again in my ears. A sheer delight to the senses.
5.) Tzimani- Tzimani
FFO: Classic Metal, Speed Metal
One of the best bands to come out of the San Diego area and another great signing by Metal Assault Management. These tracks fill you with that 70s-80s Heavy Metal you love and need in your life, but it's updated just enough to give their own flavoring. What makes this even better is that this band is two brothers, Eddie and Sebastian Vazquez. It's great to see family that gets together for the power of metal. They are going to go far if they are capable of this so early in their career.
4.) Candlemass- House of Doom
FFO- Doom Metal
The absolute masters of doom are back with their latest EP. AN interesting note is that vocalist, Mats Levin soon left the band after the release of this EP and returning, original, vocalist Johan Langqvist is back. It'll be interesting to see where the band goes from here. But before that, this EP is filled with the great, doomy, Candlemass you know and love. Catchy, doomy, heavy, and just plain...CANDLEMASS!
3.) Destroyer 666: Call of The Wild
FFO- Blackened Thrash Metal
Easily my favorite band of the genre, D666 returns with new tracks that fill the evil sense of dread and hopelessness, but in the most catchy of ways. Memorable riffs, superb vocal delivery, and stunning songwriting. They just do it right every single time and this proves it once again. Can't wait for the next LP.
2.) Hyvmine- Fight Or Flight
FFO- Progressive Metal, Progressive Rock
If it wasn't for my one release per band, per year, limits I put on myself, their debut album, Earthquake would be very high up on my Top 100 List coming next week, but as this is newer, and I really feel this EP shows off what the band is evolving into, I went with this one instead as it is three absolutely solid, catchy, and some of the best written songs I've heard from a brand new band. Imagine King's X with Dream Theater inspiration mixed with Modern Metal and poppy sensibilities. This band has it all. Go check out both Earthquake and Fight or Flight.
1.) Threads of Fate- A Funeral for the Virtuous
FFO- Symphonic Metal, Black Metal, Progressive Metal
Another one of my favorite discoveries of the year. This band captures the dark, haunting and necro-beautiful landscape that has been missing for quite a while with new talent. Imagine Kamelot, Dimmu Borgir, and Evergrey started a band; if you are someone like me, you instantly see the appeal. This entire EP is jaw dropping from start to finish and hits every single mark that I wanted check for a band like this. I couldn't suggest more that you check this out and bask in it's glory.
And there we go. The top 15 EPs of 2018. We finally did it folks, we covered so much ground between all these lists and I can just kick back, relax, and be gaming till 2019. Oh....wait...did I forget to do something? Oh right, I still have my Top 100 Albums of 2018 coming up next week. That will be a massive challenge but well worth it. Narrowing it down to 100 is a challenge for someone like me, but I can.....wait...what? Before that I gotta do some Honorable Mentions? That will help ease the pain of showing off some great albums that didn't make the Top 100, name 5-10 more shouldn't hur....huh? Oh come on....40 HONORABLE MENTIONS?!?!?! Well kids, looks like my job is far from over.
See you tomorrow for That Drummer Guy's Top 100 Albums of 2018 Part I: 40 Honorable Mentions
- Josh Rundquist (That Drummer Guy)