Between January 1st, 2022 to December 20th, 2022, numerous EPs were released across all genres as emerging and up-and-coming artists are embracing short-form projects.
This year’s best mixtapes and EPs highlighted the thrilling new ways in which our current crop of rising artists have exhibited creativity, tenacity, and perseverance in their work.
The sound of this new class of emerging talent has expanded quicker than ever this year: both Moliy and Adomaa found continued relevance by never allowing their respective takes on underground dance music to be solely defined by one sound.
Check out the top 10 EPs in 2022
4PLAY EP – KiDi
Employing the same textured highlife rhythms and mellow R&B vibes that characterized his debut, KiDi’s 4Play EP is a conceptual reflection on love, bolstered by fastidious songwriting that recounts the highs and lows of a romance. Four love notes form the anchor of the world that KiDi builds here, but the music continues to be arresting: “Habibi” is an ode to trans-generational romance, and “Champagne” is a summons to the dance floor; yet “Zombie” pairs the singer’s quest for romantic yearning and emotional vulnerability for an unmissable highlight.
Serving as the follow-up to his critically acclaimed debut Sugar, 2021’s The Golden Boy arrived as a statement of intent from an Accra-based musician, who undeniably sealed his position as one of the most critical voices of his generation. All these high watermarks have ensured that the anticipation for the hiplife icon’s next release is frenzied, but rather than meet these stratospheric expectations with pop bombast, KiDi withdraws inward to gently introspect on love and romance on 2022’s 4Play.
SOCIETY EP – MEDIKAL
On SOCIETY EP his second album of 2022 following Crossroads with close collaborator Shatta Wale—Medikal (born Samuel Adu Frimpong) taps into that heralded instinct. He rages at the state of the world like only someone in tune with its ebb and flow can, cutting right to the heart of the most precarious situations over delightful, throbbing instrumentals.
Across 10 tracks, the ice-cool MC turns a critical eye to the failing of modern society, finding points of convergence between the capitalist superstructure of the world (“ELON (SETTINGS)”) and the cybercrime culture (“ONLINE”) that he can observe around him. Still, not all of SOCIETY makes for grim listening: “STREET ANTHEM” is a drill-inspired hyper-dedication to the streets that he so closely identifies with, while “IDGAF,” another collaboration with Shatta Wale, is a thematic detour into lighter waters that sees both artists trade verses about being unconcerned with typical earthly bothers.
ENIGMA EP – WENDY SHAY
Enigma EP by Wendy Shay has songs like ‘Murrda’ produced by MOG, Habibi, Mariana, Ruthless, and New Level all produced by Beatz Vampire, with Heaven and One Man produced by Jay Scratch and Jaemally Beatz respectively. Her status as one of Ghana’s music superstars was cemented with the frequent releases of her hit songs back to back and Enigma will be no exception.
This EP is packed with 7 feel-good dance-dominated tracks that will have you going in no time! Enigma is Wendy saying she’s full of surprises, just doing what is impactful and natural.
HONEY DOOM EP – MOLIY
Honey Doom EP features some of Moliy’s most vulnerable, raw storytelling to date, and tracks her personal development as a young woman unpacking love and relationships; alongside her own experimental journey with her sound, which remains otherworldly, airy, and optimistic, while expanding to include more of her influences globally.
The eight-track project is the follow-up to her mini-EP “Mahogany St,” and the first full release since 2020’s Wondergirl skyrocketed the artist to virality, via her hit track “Sad Girlz Luv Money”, featuring Amaarae and Kali Uchis, which has amassed nearly 250 million streams to date.
SUGARCANE EP – CAMIDOH
Afrobeats/Afropop star Camidoh released “Sugarcane EP“, featuring some of the biggest names in the industry, including King Promise, Mayorkun, and more.
The six-song project features a variety of renditions for specific regions across the music market. The project also includes the previously released singles “Sugarcane” Remix featuring Mayorkun, Darkoo, and King Promise, which was delivered with a music video directed by Rex and his Glitch Africa live performance rendition.
The new additions to the EP include a Latin remix (feat. Green Cookie, Sie7e, & Franco “El Gorilla”), a Dutch remix (feat. Rich2Gether & JMANI), a Jauntin UKG remix (feat. Jauntin), and a sped-up rendition featuring DARKOO, King Promise, and Mayorkun.
MY DIARY EP – GYAKIE
My Diary, Gyakie’s second EP, is a glossier and more tightly woven improvement on its predecessor. Even though the six-song set feels like a direct thematic extension—most of her lyrics still concern love and desire—the production is stronger and her writing is significantly more self-possessed. If Seed attempted to encompass a multitude of sounds without landing on a specific identity, then these songs allow Gyakie to streamline her thought process—sometimes to a fault. As her lyrics dance between feelings of longing and fear, she occasionally finds herself in creative stasis.
The EP opens strong with the Altra Nova-produced “Audience,” a partly sultry, partly somber jazz number. Right away, you can hear the adventurous spirit from her past work, but the motives are now more concrete. “Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, my name is Gyakie, we’re about to have a good time,” she begins, reassuring herself and her listeners before igniting the party with the freestyle-Esque riffs of “na, na, na, na” that make up the chorus. The Davido-assisted “Flames” and the clever, bittersweet Afropop track “Something” also highlight that showcase her growth as an artist.
KING OF MELODIES – KWEKU FLICK
Sensational vocalist Andy Osei Sarfo, known popularly as Kweku Flick, released his much anticipated solo Extended Play (EP) titled “King of Melodies” this year.
The seven-track project is led by the title track, “King of Melodies,” a drill song that unravels Kweku Flick’s music journey in the industry so far and was produced by Khendibeatz.
PAEDAE DROP A FLOW EP – OMAR STERLING
Ace Ghanaian rapper Omar Sterling followed up on his album “Same Earth Different Worlds” after marking the one-year anniversary of the album with ‘Paedae drop a flow‘.
Dubbed ‘Paedae Drop A Flow,’ the rap-themed musical project envelopes three (3) songs namely; First In Class, Abedi Pele Flow and Don’t Waste My Time. Through this project, Omar Sterling reclaims his status as a top-tier rapper with an unrivaled pen game. The E.P. Features Darkovibes.
BECOMING ADOMAA – ADOMAA
After teasing her first EP since her 2016 debut ‘Afraba’ with the singles ‘In The Clouds’ and ‘Circus,’ Adomaa finally released her 7-track EP ‘Becoming Adomaa.’
The project takes us on a deep dive through her journey as an artist, from the days of her youtube mashups and the success that brought, her to her painful hiatus and now eventual comeback to music. The music is a blend of alternative genres that showcase her vocal ability and growth as a singer, as well as her flair for the theatrical, with lyrics that are introspective and metaphorical, affirming her identity as a storyteller and actor.
While there are no features on Becoming Adomaa, this is her most collaborative project yet, with input from various talents such as artist-producer Reynolds The Gentleman, her genius engineer-arranger brother Tronomie, and the incredible singer-songwriter David Addo Gyan, to mention a few.
HER NOTIONS SINCE 97 – GINIUS
One of the most prodigiously talented artists within the West African and Diasporan music scene, ginius announces the arrival of her much-anticipated sophomore EP “Her Notions Since ‘97” available on all DSPs.
This follows the success of her debut “How It Feels” last year. With this project, ginius is taking it a step further, teaming up with some of the fastest-rising music acts to come onto the Afro-Fusion scene to deliver this exquisite body of work.
In “Her Notions Since 97,” the listener is taken through various emotions centered around good energy to enjoy the sunny summer months with a few Afro R&B love-themed songs for cuddle season in winter. Displaying ginius’ sublime vocals alongside her production which blends contemporary Afrobeats, Afro-fusion, Highlife, and Amapiano to create what she calls the Afro Blend sound – there is an essential soundtrack for everyone’s summer mood, filled with massive jams that will no doubt be on heavy rotation on radio stations and speakers everywhere across the globe.
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