It's been a busy couple of years for Maddy O'Neal, who has spent the last five years DJing dozens of shows as she made a name for herself in the male-dominated world of dance music. Her signature musical style can be described only as "dirty funk bass music, but make it pretty" with funky sax melodies and heavy bass to balance everything out.
We caught up with Maddy O'Neal ahead of the release of her new Ricochet LP, which hits streaming platforms on Tuesday, September 20th. Read on for what you can expect from her new LP, as well as some of her iHeartRaves favorites and what she'd make if she made a piece of kandi today.
iHR: Tell us a bit about your new album?
Maddy O'Neal: It is my second full-length album since my debut in 2016. Even though I've released a ton of singles and EPs in between, this feels like a big moment as far as coming into my own as the artist I am today. I am so proud of this record. I cover many bases and tempos—some of my signature mid-tempo soulfulness is mixed with some grimy and melodic halftime, and even stretch up to some four on the floor as well, yet it all feels so full of texture and cohesive. It's full of trappy soul lush textures, future grooves, and heavy bass.
iHR: What are some of your inspirations when making new music?
MO: I find inspiration in all kinds of places...most often from seeing or hearing other art and being baffled again and again by the concept that we can just freely create a vibe for other people to enjoy. It's just the coolest thing in the world.
I'm usually feeling super inspired coming off of an amazing show I had where I get to see other peoples reactions to the music I've created and feeling the energy in a space. It's all a beautiful cycle of diving deep in the studio, spending a lot of time experimenting alone, and then feeling the explosion of a live performance and getting to showcase your work.
iHR: Can you tell us a bit about your upcoming projects? Are there any releases in the pipeline?
MO: This project has been in the works since the beginning of the year and we have been rolling it out over the last few months. The full album Ricochet drops on September 20, and I plan to really try to show off each track in its own way after its release to continue to tell the story.
"I am the jacket queen even when I have to sweat through a nice one on stage just because it's just too good...This crop long sleeve feels almost like wearing a cute jacket but without the bulkiness. One of my favorite trends, especially when laced in a psychedelic throwback print."
iHR: When it comes to your rave or festival style, how do you approach creating a look?
MO: Gotta be sleek yet bold. Accessories are always a favorite— shoes, sunglasses, necklaces. Been loving a good chic black outfit with pops of color in all the other aspects of the outfit. Comfort is also key when planning a look for stage... it's gotta be light and free-flowing.
"I love this patterned trend. Always works with a pattern "clash" or sleek black and white look. Loving this return of the bell bottoms trend, still super comfy and elongating."
iHR: What rave fashion trends are you most excited to see this festival season?
MO: I'm really loving the colorful 70s mesh and trippy kimono vibes. I'm a sucker for some cute layers /outerwear to give you some flow so I love all the extra on top of bra or cami style trends.
LOVE this pattern so much and the super cute cross neck halter. Would be the perfect look for my Same Same But Different festival on the beach."
iHR: If u made a piece of kandi today what would it say?
MO: "Love is Love" "Love always Wins" or "My Body My Choice" because I feel like our freedoms are under attack currently.
Ummm wow...I haven't seen anything like these and I think I need them on my face ASAP! Sexy and unique...it's like a boa for your face?? Count me in."
iHR: Favorite festival memory?
MO: This past year at Summer Camp Music Festival. I think I played for the biggest crowd I've ever played for. It was a year that most of my best friends were in attendance and all my homies played on the same day so we had a big squad supporting each other. The wind was in my hair and I was just getting after it...a set I will never forget.