Comes With Fries - Top Picks for 2021
We asked the Comes With Fries team what some of their favourite bits from 2021 were...
1. Favourite song / album of the year and the first time you heard it
*TOP PICK* - OLI: ‘Gemini and Leo' from Helado Negro's 2021 album 'Far In'. I first heard it in my bandmate's car on the way to a show. I was instantly drawn to the album for its beautiful production, ambient textures, and Helado's heart-warming vocals.
TOBY: Favourite Album - 'Life Support' by Madison Beer. My vote for one of the best debut albums ever. I stayed up for the midnight release so admittedly, I was just in bed when I first heard it.
Favourite Song - It's a Madison Beer double. 'Homesick' off of the album is incredible. I love the Rick and Morty audio sample at the end.
ALICE: Wet Leg - Wet Dream. I can't remember where I heard it first, all I know is that I played it on repeat at least 30 times, and since then listen to it at least twice a day. Very excited for the album.
ANDY: Album: Mild High Club - Going Going Gone
Song: Wet Leg - Chaise Lounge
ALYSSA: Song: Hout - Rozzma
I first heard this song while I was laying on the floor at FBI waiting for my friend to wrap up their show. Immediately made me get up to find it on Spotify to save for later.
VAN: Album: Arlo Parks - Collapsed In Sunbeams
An album that is so reliable, intimate and perspective. Song to song there are elements that draw you in deeper with every listen.
COOPER: Although a very recent release, released early in December, Zeitgeist Freedom Energy Exchange’s album ‘Prayer for Peace’ has become an instant favourite of mine. Having seen them live in 2019 at Meredith Music Festival, their infectious beats infusing jazz and house hits the right feels! First time I heard this was actually on my hour commute drive into our Sydney office, which we had only just been back during the week since another Sydney lockdown – it was a big Friday vibe.
ALEX: fav song - 150 by Porij, on the tube was in my discover weekly. Then turns out they're uni mates with one of my best mates Will.
SAM: Most Hated Girl by WAAX - The first time I heard it was in my apartment when I was in the process of accepting this job!
CONNIE: Got to be SG Lewis ‘Times’ album. Me and my housemates tuned into his livestream party when we were in the midst of lockdown and that is one of my favourite nights of the year.
2. Favourite campaign you’ve worked on over the past year
*TOP PICK* - TOBY: From putting together little animated visuals / cinemagraphs, editing video teasers to even getting to shoot some photography and BTS footage of her launch event, working with Jessica Mauboy on the release of 'Glow' is something I'm still trying to comprehend. It's probably the coolest thing I've ever done.
ALICE: John Grant because he's the nicest and funniest human. The album we worked on, 'Boy from Michigan,' truly feels like a seminal body of work too, like an audio-autobiography of his life. It was a true pleasure and honour to work with such a beautifully creative mind like his. I was very inspired by the way he sees the world around him and translates it through his music.
OLI: Gabriella Cohen. I really love Gabriella's new album! It was a pleasure to work with her throughout this whole campaign, pitching these great songs to community radio. Two of the album's singles ended up at #4 on the AMRAP Metro Chart, which was really exciting to see.
ANDY: Sarah Elise Thompson - It was really great to work on a classical album and get out of my comfort zone of the genre in which i usually work in.
ALYSSA: Support Act! It was super cool to see how they (and us) brought AMTD to life. I loved seeing and being a part of every aspect of this campaign.
VAN: Serenade - driving and advising on the pivot for the platform from a live fan offering to that of NFTs and unique collectables. From written, to creative to social narrative to connect music lovers to artists. To allow artists to engage in new ways and for the industry to expand their offerings. It was great to see the platform and the layers of work come together and to be rebirthed.
SAM: My favourite campaign from 2021 would have to be Strange Talk’s album ‘Speech Therapy’ a major highlight of the year! Reintroducing Strange Talk to the market, servicing some groovy as hell tracks, working creatively with content were just a few areas that both made it challenging, but very rewarding too. The clever songwriting made some major catchy moments, and the production was ace. The team pulled it together on this one and we are super excited to have laid the bedrock on their much needed return, and for the future ahead.
COOPER: AusMusic Tshirt Day for Support Act was probably my favourite campaign to work on this year - it was so great to see so many people from different aspects of the music industry come together and raise funds for an industry that has struggled so much the past 2 years.
ALEX: John Grant, most endearing and wacky guy to meet and work with.
CONNIE: We’re in the midst of it but I love working with Yumi Zouma. They are the most incredible artists and are open to so many ideas - some very exciting things to come!
3. Favourite piece of video content from the past year
*TOP PICK* - ALICE: Placebo - Beautiful James videos. It was really exciting and rewarding to have the first pieces of content their fans saw around the new album be created by us. Fans have been begging for the new album for a long time now too, so the response was huge!
OLI: Sam Evian's 'Time to Melt' video clip
VAN: Jess Mauboy - Live Q&A with Mich Harrington from the Voice. This video was a special moment during The Voice Phase of us working her socials. It was Jess’s first live Q&A with Mick the Finalist for Team Jess on The Voice. With 27K views on a conversation that was so humbling to see her jump in the deep end and own the live. It was a real conversation between two humans, between mentor and Finalist, and between an industry superstar and someone just starting their career.
ANDY: The frankie stew and harvey gunn canvas and social videos. They are extremely interesting to watch.
ALYSSA: This TikTok
COOPER" My favourite video content would have to be from the debut release of Moktar, who has effortlessly combined club and techno with traditional Arabic instrumentation, sampling and producing to emphasise his Egyptian-Australian background. The music video for ‘Silk’ has this incredibly intricate yet simple choreography that not only blends perfectly with the music, but is engaging for the full five minutes.
SAM: Jessica Mauboy's video for Glow is definitely one of my favourite's from this year. The song and video is so vibey and really highlights Jess's new creative direction and it's been so awesome working with this content and watching the reactions on social.
TOBY: The different camera angles and editing on the performance visual for 't r a n s p a r e n t s o u l' by Willow and Travis Barker is absolute fire (link if you need it).
ALEX: Frankie Stew and Harvey Gunn animation - handle with care.
CONNIE: This TikTok from Andrew Lloyd Webber. I think I’m responsible for its high watch time and engagement rate.
4. Favourite artist of the year
*TOP PICK* - COOPER: A CWF artist via Nettwerk Records, NEIL FRANCES have produced some of the catchiest, grooviest releases in 2021 in lead up to their debut album out next year. It’s been such a fun campaign to work on as Streaming Manager, with DSP’s jumping on board with some really great editorial playlists here in Australia!
TOBY: Spotify Wrapped is going to tell me it's Ariana Grande as it is every year (with good reason - she's my favourite artist ever of all time). But I also really loved how Doja Cat crafted an entire universe out of her Planet Her album and played it out across her live performances, visuals and just the overall sound of her album !
ALICE: Honeyglaze - Burglar official music video. It was very cool to be a part of the first visual piece from this exciting new band. Still obsessed with this song, even after hearing it a thousand times. Excited to see where they go from here!
OLI: Freak Slug. I got a bit obsessed with Freak Slug / Dwyer's 2021 collab album 'Slow Down Babe'. Her voice is like honey. That plus the playful synths and samples got me hooked from the first listen. She's also on a label that a good friend and old bandmate of mine helped establish, so it feels close to home despite her being based in the UK.
ANDY: Sade. I know she's not current but this year was the year of sade for me and each song i jsut getting silkier and silker each time i listen.
ALYSSA: Taylor Swift. According to my Spotify wrapped I’m in her top 1% of fans which is embarrassing because last year I got into an incredibly heated argument with a grown man in his mid 40s on why she was bad which ended in a lot of yelling. But it's okay because I finally came around. Her 10 minute long version of All Too Well makes me feel things.
VAN: Kali - If you love catchy indie tunes then look no further. At 16 years of age she shreds live and recorded she brings you into a dreamstate. She really is the real deal!
SAM: The Dead Love - they're just good. Good blokes, good music, very Aussie Blink 182 vibes and who doesn't love that?
CONNIE: Pip Blom. Working with this up and coming artist was the first campaign I’ve seen all the way through at CWF. Pip was an absolute pleasure to work with and the music the band has put out is incredible. They created a live video for the track ‘I Know I’m Not Easy To Like’ ahead of the release of their album ‘Welcome Break’ featuring lots of live footage from their tour and now I absolutely cannot wait to see them live.
5. Favourite playlist of the year
*TOP PICKS* - VAN: CWF Indie RISING!!!! 100% hands down the best playlist.
TOBY: It would have to be Frie's very own 'Indie Rising'. There just haven't been any misses with the updates on that playlist. Have definitely gotten some new faves out of it !
ALICE: "Pigeons At The Rock Pool" - our London office stereo
OLI: I didn't listen to many playlists this year, but one that stuck around through lockdown was 'Re-Imagine // Modern New Age & Ambient'. I've always loved ambient music and this playlist showcases a lot of amazing up-and-coming experimental ambient artists.
ANDY: Kitchen Affair - HERE - Smooth music for any occasion
ALYSSA: BBE by Spotify - Bad B*tch Energy
CONNIE: Tiktok songs that are actually good on Spotify - thank me later.
SAM: I don't know about favourite but my most listened to playlist this year was probably my 'Classics' playlist which features all my 70's/80's faves like The Cure, The Stones, The Smiths, Sex Pistols etc. I think I listened to it so much because we were in lockdown for so much of this year and those songs remind me of my family.
ANDY: As the creator of our very own playlist ‘Indie Rising’ it would be rude not to highlight this as my favourite playlist! It has been a delight to help shine a light on artists around the world, and use DSP platforms as a place of discovery first and foremost. I know for one, that I've discovered so many new artists from working on this playlist!
ALEX: Pigeon Perspective - Now all my playlists are named after pigeons and all are mega bops. Honourable mentions "Why Do Pigeons Scream" and "Pigeons Dance Like Chickens". However this playlist is highly curated listening experience!
6. Favourite type of fries!
*TOP PICK* - ALEX: Hashbrown an edgy fry.
TOBY: I won't ever shut up about potato gems with sriracha sauce. So good.
ALICE: Halloumi fries from the Myddleton Arms pub
OLI: I can't go past the chunky ones you get from the fish and chip shop. They slap. With a bit (a lot) of tartar sauce of course.
ANDY: Potato gems.
ALYSSA: The herbed up chips they sell at Grill’d. Idk what it is but it’s SO good!!
ALEX: Fries with Chicken salt!!! Aussie classic.
COOPER: Hands down, Soul Burger’s Loaded Cheesy Bacon Fries… no joke this is not even just my favourite type of fries, but probably my favourite food of all time [at the moment]. AND it’s Gluten Free & Vegan!
SAM: So basic but can't go past Macca's fries!
CONNIE: Potato waffles. Don’t even.