Rad Releases 21 – Foxxglove
For the final week 2 weeks of the year, as the countdown to the end of 2021 approaches, we take a personal look back on familiar names, labels, promoters, and musicians’ most loved releases of the past 12 months. It’s a time we enjoy and look forward to, through the contributions we get to find new music discoveries, releases we may have missed throughout the year. When we handed the site over last year for the 2020 feature, our 10th year into our annual special, we loved the contributions and it became apparent that we all found ourselves reconnecting with music new and old. Following another challenging year, the one constant has been how artists and their labels have adapted and produced some of the best records of our time, it’s those releases that fans have depended on to get them through another year.
Now in its 11th year, we are delighted to hand the site over once more, as we let our favourites share more details about their year in music.
Our next feature comes from an artist who appeared on many artists to watch lists during our Rad Releases feature last year. The hype was absolutely worth it as Foxxglove left an impressive mark on 2021 with the release of 2 flawless single releases. “High On Hope” was released earlier this month and it’s one of the most immersive creations steeped in this clear array of halcyon infused textures and this expressive melody, moving the audience throughout. Honestly, the track will leave you in awe. We are delighted to find out more about Foxxglove’s year in music…
- Top Releases:
Halsey – If I Can’t have love I want power
Halsey is my all time favorite artist ever. If you haven’t listened to this yet, get on it. This album was produced by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross (Nine Inch Nails). Accompanied by a R-rated film of the same name; that explores the “lifelong labyrinth of sexuality and birth.” Directed by Halsey also. An album “about the joys and horrors of pregnancy and childbirth.” Fierce and fascinating. And it’s inspiring as it’s such a brave album to release with no lead singles.
Miley Cyrus – Plastic Hearts
Another favorite artist of mine. Plastic Hearts was such a great listen, the genre suits Miley’s voice so much. Miley Cyrus can actually sing any genre and smash it, amazing album.
Doja Cat – Planet Her
I never listened to Doja Cat before this year but this record was the soundtrack to my summer. Absolutely adored it, it’s sexy and confident and empowering. Love, love, love.
Ashnikko – DEMIDEVIL
I love Ashnikko so much. If you ever need to feel like a bad b**** this is the album to put on. Whenever you start to feel like you aren’t good enough, put this album on. Every song is banger, every single one. 10/10.
Avril Lavigne – Bite Me
My favorite single release from this year is from Avril Lavigne. 10 year old me is crying! This single reminds of old school Avril and I hope the album follows suit. Been a massive fan since a young age and this track is just such a bop and I’ve had it on repeat since it’s come out.
- The best show you have played this year / gig attended
FOCUS Wales 2021, I played three sets in 1 day. It was crazy but the experience at Focus Wales was incredible and I’m so grateful I got the chance to play. It has been so lush to be able to perform again.
Also since this year was the return of live music I have to mention some of my favorite gigs I got to see.
Bring Me The Horizon at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff was incredible, the visuals, stage design, the music, it was surreal to be there at all and it was just everything I needed it to be.
Ashnikko at the O2 Forum Kentish Town in London was such a euphoric experience, no other way to describe it. I love intimate venues for a gig and it was just amazing, Ashnikko is an incredible artist and the energy was unreal. Nothing but vibes.
- Your own highlight of the year
Releasing my second single Bad Timing back in May. It’s a very personal release and I was so nervous about releasing it but I had such a wonderful response, it felt a little like closure having it out in the world. Also going back to performing live music again, I missed it so much and I was so lucky being able to play 13 gigs this year considering everything and it felt so good to be back. One last thing, watching live music again has been a highlight, music truly makes the world go around.
- Has there been any record that’s got you through this year?
Probably Kiss Me More (Feat. SZA) – Doja Cat it’s just a feel good song and makes me feel happy and got me through some days where I haven’t been feeling so hot.
- How have you adapted with releasing/recording/promoting this year?
I think I’ve adapted quite well, it’s been slightly different but because everything is online mostly anyway it hasn’t been too hard to adjust. The recording process and working on songs has been different where I have recorded the vocals at mine and then sent them to people so learning how to do that has been interesting.
- Best discovery this year?
Best discovery this year would have to be Welsh artist CATTY (although I knew of CATTY already from Dusky Grey) Her voice is absolutely insane, I love it. She released two singles this year and I can’t wait to hear more from her.
- Artist/Band to watch for 2022
Artist/Bands to watch for 2022 would have to be (all welsh)
1. The Honest Poet. His voice is beautiful and his album ‘Letters to my Queen’ is also amazing. I watched him perform at Focus Wales and everyone was singing along. It was great.
2. Minas – When he’s not producing for every artist in south wales (including me), Minas is giving electro punk realness with his releases and his shows, mad energy, mad talented. Definitely keep an eye on this guy!
3. Bandicoot – If you haven’t heard of them yet you will. A bilingual (English/Welsh) band with their sound influenced by Talking Heads and Radiohead. They have been making moves through Wales this year. Every show I’ve watched them play has been amazing and so full of energy, they know how to get a crowd moving.
- Plans for the New Year
My plans for the new year include not being so hard on myself and looking after myself, watching more local gigs, finishing and releasing my EP and being happy 🙂
Thank you so much for spending time on our end of year feature, looking forward to that EP release!