EP Showcase


What can be said about Mother of Millions?  They are a Greek band with serious emotional power in their sound.  Their first three albums speak for themselves in this way, especially Artifacts.  After the 2019 release of that album, the band experienced unfathomable tragedy, the passing of keyboardist Makis Tsamkosoglou.  It is always a difficult thing for a band to continue on without one of their own, hence the silence from them for a couple years.  They are back, though, with an EP that seems to encapsulate all the emotions they are experiencing through this process.

Orbit is an EP, yes, but its four-track offering is extremely satisfying, like unto a full album.  Yes, I want more, but I can listen to this over and over again.  The music here retains all the emotive fireworks of their previous albums.  I would say that this EP has definite Muse influence, as well as Radiohead.  For me, they take those sounds and elevate them considerably, adding giant riffs and thunderous drums alongside pure feeling. 

The title track is a great example of this.  This song, without fail, delivers the goosebumps with its fantastic vocals, riffy texture, and emotional lyrics.  This is definitely one of my favorite songs this year.  “No Light, No Light” is a terrific Florence and The Machine cover that I like more than the original—that’s a rare thing for me.  The intro “Where Do We Go From Here” is short, but extremely effective.  Finally, the closer is a piano version of “Rome” from their debut album.  I love this version with its delicate, sensitive nature enhanced by a vulnerable vocal performance from George. 

Overall, this EP has put the fire in my heart for a new album from the band.  They have such potential to be huge worldwide, in my opinion.  I hope they can find that foothold soon.


Angie Haze is actually a local musician to my hometown of Akron, Ohio.  I first heard her music a year ago with her brilliant single “End of Times”, and I was excited to see a full EP from her this year.  The EP is called Mutations, and it, too, has a satisfying arc that feels like a full LP.

Angie produces an alternative pop/rock sound that feels like both a throwback to the early 00s but also something fresh and new.  It feels like everything she produces has a twist or quirk to it that makes it interesting and inviting.  That’s what I really like about her music: she knows how to be flamboyant in all the right ways.

Mutations has six tracks and is around 33 minutes long, so it is almost a full album in my eyes.  The first track, “Smooth, Like You” is a radio edit version of the last track, which is about 7 minutes long.  Right away, this is one of my favorite songs here.  The long version, of course, is the better of the two.  I love the way it muses and focuses on some of the subtleties of Angie’s voice, and then the rumbling climax near the end really delivers.  I also love “Inside Your Mind (Addiction)” and its gritty, searing, melodic groove.  The crazy instrumental and harmonies in the second half deserve to be cranked up on your best stereo.  I really like “One More Firefly”, as well.  The lyrics are ever so slightly syrupy, but it works here and feels authentic.  I should also mention the Radiohead cover, “Creep”.  I appreciate it especially for how Angie hits the big notes perfectly and with her own flair.  It’s a great cover.

Angie deserves attention outside of her hometown.  I think she has the ideas and the charisma for the big time, so to speak.  I really like this EP, and I hope listeners give it a chance.  While you’re there, listen to some of her other work, too. 


Courtney Swain is best known as the vocalist and keyboardist for Bent Knee.  Her solo works, though, are just as good, especially 2019’s Between Blood and Ocean.  I’ll admit that I was hoping for something of that caliber again.  It feels like on this new solo album, and even on the recent Bent Knee release, that Courtney’s talents weren’t utilized to full effect.  Still, Silver Lining is a great little album; I’m going to call it an EP because it is only 23 minutes long or so. 

Courtney’s music can be all over the place in terms of style.  She can release a rock album, then a pop record, then an ambient experience, and so on.  This record is more of a pop album with electronic and other more obscure genres present.  I like how she included a couple tracks of recordings from what I assume are events in her youth.  It makes the album feel very personal, like she’s reminiscing about the past and where she needs to go from here.  The album has 8 tracks, but two of them are these audio recordings.

This record is quite varied.  The first couple tracks are spunky, heavily filtered affairs with some great moments, like the second half of “Camenti” with its terrific vocals.  We get super catchy moments, like “Magic Mirror”, which is a loopy and addictive pop song.  “Inanimate Object” is an ambient piece that feels cluttered and odd, in a good way.

For my money, the last two tracks are the main event, though.  “Derange Yourself” is a shadowy, echoing song with such a pleasant aura and beat.  I love how it ends with tender piano strokes.  The final track, “Who Woulda”, is also wonderful.  It almost feels ambient in how it is produced, but Courtney is part of the aura.  The vocals are blurred slightly, but the tune is great and I love the flitting nature of the keys.  The song peaks in the middle with an absolutely gorgeous keyboard melody that I always look forward to hearing. 

Courtney has so much talent.  I hope to see her in big, more wide open productions someday soon.  It can sometimes feel like she is jammed into a box of other people’s ideas, and like she doesn’t have the time or means to produce the album she really wants to write.  Maybe that’s just my perspective, but I’ll definitely be following her career with interest.


Radio Wolf is a new artist for me.  This is a solo project for German songwriter and producer Oliver Blair, and when I saw his email in my inbox, I knew this was going to be something special.  The new EP is called Night Light, and it makes me want to track down everything else he’s released.

The music here is ambient, electronic, and synthwave.  I get visions of neon colors and darkened city alleyways while I listen to it.  There are melodies and beautiful auras in each of the four tracks here, but the experience is mainly about annunciating abstract emotions that we all know.  This record has a cinematic quality that I find quite pleasing and engaging, as well.

Night Light is only about 12 minutes long, but those minutes are precious.  I love the cautious melody of “Sleepless” and the dark mystery and science fiction of “The Lost Tape”.  Those tracks are both 2:25 exactly, and I honestly wish they were much longer.  The meat of the EP comes with “On-Screen Death” and the title track, however.  “On-Screen Death” has sorrowful whimsy, yet also feels epic in a cinematic and tragic way.  I don’t know why, but I get images of Boromir meeting his demise, or perhaps Theo Faron from Children of Men.  I connect with it greatly.  The final track, “Night Light” reminds me of John Carpenter’s spellbinding, secretive style.  There are guitars here that add a reverberating might to it, too, and the track overall just feels enchanting.

I don’t know much about this project or its producer, but I want more.  I want an entire album of this style, and I want it on vinyl for sure.  This is exactly the type of music I need right now.


Last year, I was pleased to review Deep in the Old Forest from progressive rock/metal band Somewhereout.  I still consider it a hidden gem from 2021.  It deserves more attention.  I was happy to see the band release a new EP this year, then, and especially with the same theme of the recent album.  More Tales from the Old Forest definitely feels like a continuation, but it also feels different in some ways.

I have to mention, first and foremost, that the sound quality on this EP is lacking.  It could definitely use some more time in post-production.  I don’t think it was meant to be huge release, though.  It feels more like extra demos for listeners who are already fans.  The music is perhaps a little heavier than the album last year, though each track is honestly quite different.

More Tales from the Old Forest has three songs, but they are all above five minutes in length.  “Lady Bird” is a catchy metal tune with rip-roaring instrumentals and great guitars.  “The Dragon” comes next, and might be the best overall.  I love this quirky instrumental track; it flows so well, especially the heavier second half.  I wish I could hear the sound cleaned up on this one.  Finally, “The Loneliness” closes the EP, and it definitely has more prog rock vibes, especially with the keyboard lines it uses.  I rather like the various transitions from loud to soft it employs, as well as the solid vocal hook, and it’s just a great track overall.

Somewhereout has so much potential.  Their style is grey and enigmatic, much like an old forest of life and mystery.  I’m looking forward to hearing a full scale production from them again in the future.


Find these artists online:

Mother of Millions Facebook

Mother of Millions Bandcamp


Angie Haze Facebook

Angie Haze Bandcamp


Courtney Swain Facebook

Courtney Swain Bandcamp


Radio Wolf Facebook

Radio Wolf Bandcamp


Somewhereout Facebook

Somewhereout Bandcamp


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