When December starts rolling around, so does the time for retrospectives. It's interesting to look back on the year that's about to end and reflect on the things that stayed the same, what changed, and look forward towards the things to come. Personally, I like to look back on a year in terms of music. What trends became popular? Which artists made a huge splash? How has my taste in music developed? What are my favorite songs of the year?
Every other week in December I'm going to highlight my personal favorite EPs, albums, and singles of 2018. You will quickly notice that all of the music I'm going to be talking about is in the realm of electronic music/EDM, as that is where my interest lies. This week I will be going over my favorite EPs of the year, in no particular order.
Matroda - Shut it Down EP
One of the first artists I discovered in 2018 was Matroda. He is known for his bass-centric G-house style, which this EP perfectly encapsulates. With creative sound design and impeccable production quality I quickly fell in love. The track Boom Bap is the highlight for me and is easily one of my favorite songs of the year.
Virtual Riot - German Engineering EP
(Listen to the full Youtube playlist here.)
Sometimes, you just need extremely disgusting bangers. Virtual Riot provided us with two EPs to satisfy those needs this year. Don't be fooled, however- beyond the surface of the German Engineering EP lies more than just material to break your neck to. I'm talking about the closer of the EP, The Darkest Night. Although still absolutely in the vein of bass music, this track leans into more ethereal sound design, creating tons of atmosphere.
The only track I wasn't a fan of was Komputermusik. It provided nothing new to the EP and felt a bit tired because of it. Despite that however, this EP still ranks among my favorites of 2018.
Robotaki - Science
From chill vibes in Together We're Screwed to amazing sound design in Restless, this EP does a lot of things right. The vocal features are all very enjoyable, the synths are unique and satisfying to listen to, and when you even add the dedicated intro track into your playlist it's easy to conclude there's a lot going for Robotaki. I could go into great detail about why I love this EP, but I think it's better to keep things on the short side.
Muzzy - The Cascade EP
Although his Spectrum EP from last year was far from terrible, it didn't manage to leave much of an impression on me. 2018's The Cascade EP however is a very different story. Featuring some amazing collaborations with the likes of Celldweller, Flite, and Sullivan King, Muzzy put together a project that puts together sick vocals, tons of energy, and most importantly high-tier DnB beats. The title track Cascade was the one track I didn't particularly enjoy, but much like with German Engineering that is hardly a complaint when the rest is top-notch.
Space Laces - Overdrive EP
This EP single-handedly proved to me that screechy synths aren't inherently bad. The zero karks given style of Space Laces is present throughout the entire project and the only thing I can truly say about it is that it's awesome. This is definitely a 'love it or hate it' EP, and the majority will likely fall into the latter half, but to me it's just magical. I hope he'll be holding it down in the dubstep scene for many more years to come.
1788-L - S E N T I E N C E
One of my personal breakout artists this year is 1788-L. I love the agression in the music, the futuristic dystopian theme that ties all the tracks together, the lore behind the alias, basically just everything. S E N T I E N C E is a microcosm of what 1788-L as a whole is, so it only makes sense to include it here.
DROELOE - The Choices We Face
Let's be real. Is it truly my 'best of' list if there isn't any DROELOE on it? Although I can't say The Choices We Face is as good as last year's A Moment In Time, because quite frankly it's not, it's still a very enjoyable listening experience that provides you with the quintessential DROELOE sound. Weird Machine, Taking Flight, and Looking Back are the better tracks on the EP, but although the rest is fine, it does feel slightly lacking compared to their previous work. It just goes to show how much I love their music when it's still on this list.
Ekali - Crystal Eyes
(Listen to the full Youtube playlist here.)
Like most people, my first introduction to Ekali was his remix of Flux Pavilion's I Can't Stop. Since then, he has continued releasing great music with his latest project being his Crystal Eyes EP. It's an ethereal experience with some seriously great tracks that rank among my favorites of 2018. Chief among them are Stay Hollow and Forever, although Helios follows very closely behind.
SLANDER - The Headbangers Ball EP
The basis of this EP lies in a really fun concept: A melodic and/or chill buildup, which then eventually shifts into an absolute banger of a track. All three tracks nail this concept, and I have to give specific praise to the collaboration with RIOT. You Don't Even Know Me is a blast to listen to and the transition from the first drop to the second is the smoothest of the project.

Next time I will be going over my favorite albums of 2018. In the meantime, I hope you got some good music recommendations out of this!