I had my SSION concert experience last Thursday at Santos' Party House and wrote it up over here for everyone's favorite gay NYC rag, Next Magazine. Frontman Cody Critcheloe was a little late in responding to my questions for the article so I present to you the full Q & A with America's mustachioed man of the moment.
Last night's concert was a record release party? Or re-release party? I'm confused.
I'm calling it a deluxe-release party because of the bonus tracks and remixes added to the original 10 songs that I gave away for free via the SSION website last year. So it's more like Bent: Reloaded or something. Bent Bloated sounds even better.
Tell me about your experience making this record.
I made Bent with a bunch of different producers and it was a nightmare. Writing the songs was the best part but getting the production right was really hard because I had a singular idea of the kind of pop record I wanted to make. I'm really glad I got [the record] out of my system.
And now you're headed out on tour? Where to?
It's a full North American tour with some stops in Canada. I've never done a tour this long (30+ dates) but I'm ready for it. I love touring and playing live every night more than anything. I told my booking agent I didn't want a day off.
How did you end up choosing to bring along House of Ladosha?
House of Ladosha is one of my favorite groups right now and I wanted to have fun on tour. I finally had a chance to pick the opening act and they were my first choice. With those girls on board, it's gonna be a full-proof mess. I can't wait to play some really small midwestern shows and really fuck shit up. I'm also bringing a friend along to film the entire tour, so get ready.
You brought in quite the crowd. What do you attribute to your success? How much has YouTube factored into it?
I write good songs and I love performing live. On top of that, I've been doing this for a long time. The videos create a lot of excitement about SSION. They create a much bigger illusion and then it comes true. I'm really thankful so many people showed up. I'm always surprised. I usually think no one is gonna come.
What did you think of tonight's show, from the energy to the looks of the concert goers to your stage diving experience?
It got me really pumped for the tour. I wanna become a better performer. I want people to fucking loose their shit. The live SSION experience should feel like the floor is caving in. And it needs to be loud. I wish it would have been louder. It should hurt.
Who were those muscle hunk go-go dancers? And do you ever worry about Alexis Penney stealing the spotlight from you at your live shows?
Richard kennedy and Ryan lawrence are the dancers. And Alexis is a star! I love having them perform with me. Once I'm on stage, I don't really worry about anything. I'm just a vessel for the music. People are gonna look at what they wanna look at. I'm just there to instigate. That's my job.
You seem to create music, videos and stunning live performances nonstop. What keeps you going?
I really really love doing it more than anything else and I suck at anything that isn't SSION so I don't really have a choice.