The Best EPs Of September, According To PlayGround

Ten vinyl records released in the past few weeks that stand out from the rest, from 10 to 1

We bring you ten essential 12”s from September, the final selection at the end of the month featuring only the very best of different genres, from acid to ghostly R&B, counting down from 10 to 1.

Like every month we're giving you an overview of what, according to PlayGround staff, have been the ten best 12”s of the past month. Music released on short format, but with the same impact and transcendence of an album. Here are our favourites from September, counting down from 10 to 1.

10. SFV Acid: “Neighborhood Archives EP” (UNO NYC)

SFV Acid knows how to balance Luke Vibert-style acid freak and the beach-Balearic spirit of the new California psychedelic electronica (even a little new age at times). For a track for napping and cruising like “Seaside Cruisin’ Tribe”, we have the kind of quality gems that the Rephlex catalogue would love to have, such as “As Is” (in two parts) and “Ashland Slumber”.


9. Old Apparatus: “Realise EP” (Sullen Tone)

The Old Apparatus collective are delivering the new chapter in their Sullen Tone series, but this is the first EP written by one sole member of the quartet, hence the cohesive turbid and cinematic IDM and ambient sound.


8. Delroy Edwards: “4 Club Use Only” (L.I.E.S.)

Ghetto and house: this juxtaposition of sensibilities is what we hear on Delroy Edwards' first EP. Distorted 909 beats and super sharp hi-hats live together as one with deep pads and tinkling melodies, resulting in a brand of deep-ghetto that aims to destroy the dance floor and be deeply evocative at the same time.


7. Violetshaped: “The Remixes part 1” (Violet Poison)

Violet Poison’s third title is the EP of remixes of its last 12”, and what gives it added value is the collection of guests, perfectly chosen for the occasion: Roly Porter covers “The Lord Won’t Forget” with a mantle of expressionistic synthetic textures, Vatican Shadow adds more drum and more (bad) vibes to a “Delusory Parasitosis” which seems here like a shot of James Ruskin, and Kangding Ray deactivates the fury but adds tension with his techno rereading containing intermittent breaks.


6. Pearson Sound: “Clutch” (Hessle Audio)

On “Clutch”, the percussion sounds skeletal in the midst of buzzing, with fine columns of beats and snaps halfway between the schematic quality of grime and the high arches of garage. There’s not much more than drum machines in collision, pure minimalism that skins you alive with the same ease of Plastikman’s “Spastik”.


5. Downliners Sekt: “Trim / Trab” (Infiné)

On their first transmission for InFiné, Downliners Sekt reach new levels of deepness and maturity; confirming that their sound is one of the most personal and intoxicating in modern electronica.


4. Bicep: “Visions Of Love” (Feel My Bicep)

2012 is a big year for Bicep. The final confirmation, however, comes with this “Visions Of Love”. With this title, they're premiering their own label, Feel My Bicep, stressing what they already pointed out with their release “$tripper”: if anyone convincingly represents the Jersey house revival, it's them.


3. Trimbal: “Confidence Boost” (R&S Records)

Just when people thought Trimbal had retired from the game, comes “Confidence Boost” - re-launching him with two slices of hallucinatory grime remixed by Harmonimix, James Blake’s more spectral parallel project. The redhead plays with Trim’s voice on “Confidence Boost” as if it were an elastic band, making it sound like a squirrel or a lion, high and low, among overloaded synths that saturate the entire auditory spectrum.


2. Blawan: “His He She & She” (Hinge Finger)

Very sick techno: as a whole, this EP is like taking a stroll through the mind of a blood-thirsty madman; you know you'll probably find some unpleasantness on your way, but you can't help but sniff out all of its dark corners.


1. Zodiac: “Zodiac” (Vase)

Zodiac, The Weeknd's first producer, makes his solo debut with a sound in the vein of the Tri Angle label: a spectral mix of house beats, muffled bass lines, high-pitched voices, and languid textures. Lovely.


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