EPs - 2014 / by E

Halcyon Drive's Cruel Kids EP is doused in warm beats, hitting rhythms, addictive melodies, and lyrics that manage to run through your head for days, without getting old. "Blisters" is blessed with sweet lyrics and a fun melody, "Apart" manages to stay decidedly addictive and catchy, even with its slow build, and the ever impressive "Crusoe" is stuffed full of so much to rave about that its best to just listen and hear for yourself. Grab Cruel Kids from iTunes now.

The flawlessness of Halsey's Room 93 is no surprise after what we heard on singles "New Americana" and "Ghost", but songs "Empty Gold", "Hurricane", and the near physical ache of "Trouble" are so impressive it's downright awe-inspiring for a debut EP. Get Room 93 from iTunes and fall for the smoky vocals and pure piano riffs that drip with an understated soul.

The Honeyrunners effortlessly smooth mix of genres - self-described as 'sticky, sweaty, soul-drenched rock & roll' - is wholly addictive. Pressing rhythms lay under melodies so fun you'll miss how great the lyrics are your first time around and the whole thing comes out feeling invitingly warm. Get EP 2 from iTunes now for everything from the sweet with an edge "Under Control" to the unforgettable "Bones". 

Take your pick of James Bay EP's this year: with two EPs released this year - Let It Go and Hold Back the River - and a full length set to be released in March 2015 (Chaos and the Calm), there's no shortage of new tracks to fall for. Though Bay has a tendency to overuse chords and repeat some of his melodies, the raw style in which he writes and the rich vocals which accompany it make up for all of it and come out so entrancingly sweet that it's impossible to not fall for tracks like "If You Ever Want To Be In Love", "Hold Back The River", and "Let It Go".

Fairchild's Sadako runs steady, with an enviable self-restraint and a penchant for bare-bones lyrics that share all while remaining stubbornly interpretive. "Arcadia" will have you hooked on their sound, "Stay Young" will get you to sing-along, and "Running Bear" will have you ready to play it all again; easy to listen to without the songs becoming tired, it's not one to miss. Get Sadako from iTunes now.

Misterwives crashed onto the scene with their debut EP Reflections in early January 2014. Title track "Reflections" has garnered all the fame, but tracks "Vagabond", "Coffins", and "Imagination Infatuation" showcase the band's songwriting talent, their penchant for word play, and the ever impressive vocal range of lead-singer Mandy Lee. If you don't yet have the Republic signed band's EP, grab Reflections from iTunes now.

East of Ely's self-titled EP features their fluid vocals and ever changing dynamics while "Came Without" and "Waterfalls" are filled with such fresh beats you won't be able to help getting sucked in and "Proud" and "Easy Friend" hold it all together with a grounded feel and a solid sound. Grab East of Ely from iTunes now.

Zella Day's rich vocals and thoughtful lyrics make her self-titled debut EP a must have. Featuring already loved singles "Sweet Ophelia" and "East of Eden", it doesn't hold much surprise or new music for fans, but it does offer a promise of more great things to come. Zella Day is available on iTunes.

Anna Renee's The Places You'll Go features soulful vocals, warm beats, and an impressive piano presence as striking as the honest lyrics, put forth by Anna herself. "Sharks" and "Guilty" are sure to be crowd favorites but "Pendulum" and title track "The Places You'll Go" feature the remarkable range of Renee's vocals while "Ready for Flight" and "Battle Cry" offer up a deceptively soft sound for their strong spirit, a theme which runs through the entire EP, holding everything together with strong lyrics and solid productions. Get The Places You'll Go from iTunes now.