EP stands for "extended play record" or simply "extended play." EPs cover the middle ground between a single and a full length album. They are usually around 5 or six songs in length.
Musicians release EPs for a lot of reasons, but perhaps most importantly, they are frequently used as a promotional tool. EPs are used to introduce new bands, keep interest in an artist alive between full length release, to help promote a tour and more.
EPs can also be a solution for artists who want to release something more than a single but can't afford the studio time to record a full length album. EPs still have enough music to be a more complete project than a single but are still short enough to require less studio time than a 10 to 12 song full length.Some musicians use EPs to experiment with new music styles or dabble in less commercial sounds than their full length albums feature. EPs are often sometimes used to release b-sides/unreleased tracks that got cut from the full length.
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