The official review on Ekali's new EP, 'Crystal Eyes'

review 01/10/2018

Known for his emotional, lush DJ edits, beloved online status and well-memed opinions on sound quality, EDM producer Ekali has finally released his debut extended play. The Crystal Eyes EP comes four years after the Canadian artist posted his first remix on Soundcloud, and really showcases the meteoric rise in his popularity and artistic growth.

Three of the projects six tracks were released in recent months as singles, but listening through Crystal Eyes, they show zero signs of ageing. I suppose that can be accredited to Ekali’s selection of lush, detailed sounds and forward-thinking production. Even the euphoric chorus of Forever holds true to it’s feeling (its longevity is in the name I guess).

The mossy. assisted Stay Hollow opens the project with haunting piano chords and a string accompaniment. Add unique percussion and gorgeous water splash SFX, as well as chopped & screwed vocals — this one is an absolute winner.

Ekali has done a fantastic job of collaborating with artists who compliment and push his sound on this project. Raspy guest vocals from K.Flay create impeccable tension and release moments with what could either be an industrial synth or an electric guitar in the drop of Forgot How To Dream.

Fans of the heavy trap sound that Ekali often produces in his remixes will froth over track three — Helios. The Slumberjack assisted jam begins the spate of three singles and fires the EP’s energy levels way over 9000. Follow that up with the mellower bops Forever and Leaving (featuring Medasin, Elohim and Yuna, respectively), and your emotions are all over the place.

Wrapping up the project is title track Crystal Eyes. It’s yet another EDM track released in 2018 that you can really hear the influence of Flume’s 2016 album Skin on. It’s a gentle, lower tempo closer, which does well to bring you back to earth after the rest of the EP has sent you soaring.

This post originally appeared on Hendon Blog.

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