List Week: Top 15 EPs Of 2014 | Exploding Head Syndrome

Heyyyyy! We’re back as Exploding Head Syndrome after taking a lot of November and December off! Yes we know the breaks are just as bad as Elusive Little Comments’ but to remove all fourth wallness, I am just one guy. I speak in third person because not everything is about me and it’s all about spreading music as far and as wide as possible like the most sonically fulfilling STD possible. My real life job that pays me money unlike this site got super busy which meant that when I wasn’t working I was sleeping. Sleeping genuinely became a hobby of mine during that period I think. Anyway, it’s LIST WEEK! Our last week of content for 2014 where we list the best EPs, Tracks and Albums which we either reviewed or checked out over the last twelve months!
Our first day is all about EPs! Our Top 15 EPs of 2014! EPs don’t come along very often but the ones we heard were way, way good so they deserve some hot steamy list action. We’ll be listing from number 15 to the top spot aswell as providing perhaps a couple lines of why we loved it. Enjoy! I love you.
  1. SOUPCANS – PARASITE BRAIN (Telephone Explosion)
Despite what my other half thinks it’s good to be brief sometimes. Soupcans’ Parasite Brainis an absolute ear drum destroying journey into overwhelming intensity which only lasts 10 minutes but will have you wondering why you chose to listen to it for many, many more 10 minutes periods afterwards.
  1. PORCUPINE – I SEE SOUND (Riot House Records)
It’s hard not to love this EP. Long time running band Porcupine’s latest offering is a catchy escape from all things Ebola and spiders which remains enjoyable every single time you listen to it. If you were able to see sound, I imagine I See Sound to be very colourful, with a hint of sluttiness to it.
Ivory Hours are another band to emerge from 2014 and deliver something great for us listeners. The lead single Mary provided everybody with a calming blanket that these guys were going to deliver something that’s catchy while also having a bit of depth in the lyricism, and that’s exactly what the EP contained in bountiful amounts. Also, did you hear Hello Honey? Oh my god.
  1. ALARM BELLS – PART TWO (Battle Worldwide Recordings)
From the ashes of Danananananakroyd came Alarm Bells, a band that look to start anew while also flying the flag for all fans of fast paced mindfuckery. Part Two like all trilogies is the highlight, very much the Two Towers of the Alarm Bells world. Though Return Of The King was my favourite personally. I should’ve thought of a better trilogy. BATMAN. Yes. Part Two is the Dark Knight of the Alarm Bells world. Nailed it.
  1. DEATHCATS – THE RADDEST EP (Fuzzkill Records)
Fuzzkill Records is another label that we made friends with this year, and we cannot help but love what garage rock/punk band Deathcats bring to the table with The Raddest EP.
Ohhhh my top 10. Grace Joyner’s wonderful Young Fools is a very sweet, very poppy EP that has each of my toes tapping to the floor as furiously and gloriously as can be. The tracks all bring their own personality to the table, and we are left to gobble it all up in what is quite possibly the greatest meal of all time. I love you Grace, marry me.
Stars are freaking mental, so it makes sense that Astronomique’s entire songwriting craft revolves around all things astronomical. Burning Stars Fade is a superb journey down some sounds that wouldn’t usually be put together but the result is something that pairs everything up into something that’s worthy of being married and adored by everybody. This is a really good EP, and I cannot wait to hear more from Astronomique next year.
Pale Fires have got themselves a mammoth of an EP in Mammoth. The young band from London perform psychedelic rock that could actually get people inspired and feeling like they are the mammoth, ready to barge and stampede right through everything that stands in their way of becoming the best person in the world. All of the tracks contain moments that make it difficult to pick out a true favourite; they’re all favourite moments.
  1. TICKLE TORTURE – SPECTROPHILIA (Blood Of The Young Records)
My personal kryptonite is music that sounds sexy. That’s why Queens Of The Stone Age are my favourite band and why I constantly jerk off to Al Green all the time. Tickle Torture’s Spectrophilia is an EP that doesn’t exactly talk about the loving side of love, more like the lusting side of love. Tracks such as Would I Love You and You’re Gonna Be My Baby are superb disco funk classics that continuous get my hips moving but then there’s Fuck Me With The Lights On which kinda rounds the entire EP up in a nutshell. It is sexy, but in the way that people find ballgags sexy. It’s such a great EP though. I love it.
The Coppertone is a badass lady singer-songwriter who became the mammoth from the Pale Fires EP and stampeded back into the music industry with one killer EP. The Bakery is a great, ballsy record that delivers catchy hooks alongside superb instrumentation and one hell of a voice that makes me fall in love a little. An absolutely superb EP.
  1. FALLING STACKS – VISZLA (Battle Worldwide Recordings)
Falling Stacks returned with a new EP Viszla which is the follow up to last year’s Dogo Argentino which I believe came to of our Best EPs List oddly enough. Once again these guys return and deliver their slightly messed up punk sound with all kinds of original material that continues to put these guys in high esteem all over the place. I would like to see where Falling Stacks go from here, and maybe if they could drop another EP soon please.
If like me and many other people you were disappointed with The Black Keys’ Turn Blue then I’m sorry. Lets all get together and not only hug it out but also take a listen to Knuckle’s This Week’s Been Hell EP. Think of The Black Keys on drugs and you’ve got yourself a pretty good idea of what to expect from it. This EP is a brilliant journey into some fast paced, catchy blues rock that delivers on all things great and bluesy to typical and catchy. Knuckle came forth and punched me in the face with how good this EP is, and I thank them. Thank you Knuckle. Thank you so much.
Top three! Florida punk trio Sonic Graffiti released Friendly Unit Creation Kit last year but because we did not discover it and it seems to have slipped under the radar of everybody else we decided to give it one more chance to absolutely tear the balls of 2014 off because my god, what a fantastic EP this is.
If you like your music to be fast paced with intensity thrown into fire and then pumped with ecstasy then this is the EP for you. Sonic Graffiti somehow create a sound that is full of technical ability by filling it with solos, rhythms and riffs while performing it at a tempo that just sounds impossible to control. This EP blasts by at such a speed that even the acoustic number about a girl sounds in a hurry. It’s fantastic. Some of the best material I’ve ever heard in the punk genre resides in this EP, and I want to reside in it forever.
Canada will always remain a solid home for fantastic emerging music. It’s recent revival of a music industry over there has produced some of the best music I’ve heard all year, and it’s great that a good chunk of the inbox is full of Canadian music. There’s one particular part of Canada’s music scene that has always intrigued us however, and that’s the one forefronted by WTCHS.
Out Of Sound Records, and now PERDU and Sonic Unyon seem to have become a breeding ground for some of the most unique material ever produced. It’s lo-fi, heavily distorted and simply twisted sound is something that was at one point the only thing we could feature on Exploding Head Syndrome purely because of how astounding it was, and now it’s become an entire subsection. WTCHS certainly brought prominance to the sound, and while they continue to keep the ball rolling they are seemingly becoming pretty big despite the obvious notion that not everybody is going to like what they perform.
WTCHS’ EP It’s Not A Cross, It’s A Curse! Sees the band deliver exactly everything that makes up the sound of this particular section, while also adding in the most basic elements of accessibility in coherency and hooks. It’s still the same old battered, convoluted sound that astounded us originally but there’s very minor hints of progression towards a sound that could fit a much broader audience too. It’s a superb EP and one that sees WTCHS begin to adapt their sound towards their growing and perplexed popularity.
It just had to be number one didn’t it? Clue Records have had one superb existence so far and that has certainly been made easier by the recent explosion of exposure to Allusondrugs. This grunge band have been making waves lately having been endorsed heavily by Kerrang! And receiving airplay on their channel, as well as making it on their Artists To Watch list. The record label is awesome and Allusondrugs’ debut EP is even better.
This EP is full of entertaining tracks full of personality which come in the form of guitar riffs, passionate vocals, relatable lyrics and even the song titles. Ted, What’s The Porn Like In Heaven? For example. It’s such a great EP and hearing it live at this year’s Reading Festival made it even better. It is definitely a very important stepping stone in what is looking potentially like a very, very good career for Allusondrugs in the near future.
So there we have it! Our first list is over and Allusondrugs takes the top spot for Best EP Of 2014! Each of the fifteen EPs listed have definitely left an impression on us in one way or another, from Soupcans bleeding our ears to Tickle Torture given us the filthiest boner imaginable, but considering where they are now and where they’re looking to be as we look towards 2015 the crown had to go to Allusondrugs. We hope you have enjoyed reading all of the words thrown before you today, and tomorrow we will be back with the first half of our Top 50 Tracks Of 2015 List! See you tomorrow. Love you.
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