SSION in Bullett magazine
Surely you’ll know by now that we’re big fans of SSION at Dangerous Minds. The album Bent (which was originally released as a limited edition free download last year) was one of my favorites of 2011. It’s the kind of artful, emotional, electronic dance music that I always wished the Scissor Sisters sounded like, or that Madonna would make instead of chasing Lady Gaga’s crown.
Well, Bent has now been given the full, physical release treatment by Dovecote Records, and SSION are out on tour to promote it this autumn. That means they will soon be coming to a town near YOU and, godammit, I wish I lived in the States so I could catch one of these shows!
As someone whose music I greatly respect and admire, for the third Notes From The Niallist column I caught up with Cody Critcheloe (who, for all intents and purposes, is SSION), to ask him what he has in store for this tour, and how the album promotion is going:
The Niallist: You’ve stated that you plan on producing a video for each track on your album Bent - how is that going? Is there a narrative thread between these videos? I have noticed some slight stylistic similarities.
Cody Critcheloe: That is true, we’ve completed 5 of the 10 videos so far. We’re still waiting to release a few while we are on tour. The wait is killing me! Yes, there is a narrative thread between all of the videos… I’m not sure if everyone will pick up on it and i don’t know if it’s really important that they do… We will see, I guess.
TN: You put out Bent as a limited edition free download last year, and now it is being re-released physically. How do you feel the free download worked in your favor? Or did it?
CC: Well a lot of people are familiar with the songs, they come to shows and sing a long, and that’s cool. I think it worked in my favor for sure. I mean, do people even buy records anymore? i do sometimes but not like i did when i was a kid… I feel like things are on the uprise though, but then again I don’t have anything to compare it to. This is just they way it turned out.
TN: You put a lot of effort into your stage shows - what can we expect from Ssion on this tour? Any secrets you might be willing to give away?
CC: I think a lot of people have seen photos from shows we did 5 or 6 years ago and assume that they are going to get that, or they see the “Clown” video and think that’s who i am and what we do. That’s not the case. iId need some insane funding and the audience to put on shows that big! When we get the opportunity to do a lavish pop show I go all out, but when you’re touring in a van and sometimes playing to 100 people in a basement or dive bar you can’t really do that! And i actually sort of like stripping it down, i like forcing people to have to deal with it on a strictly musical level… For this tour it’s me and a live band, some visual elements but nothing really over the top. It doesn’t seem to bother people who come to the shows either. It’s still good. I’m a good performer and the band is tight. Also, we have House of Ladosha supporting us on the tour, they are my favorite band in NYC. Check them out!
TN: Who are your primary influences as a live performer? And musically and more generally, in terms of art and style which you poses a lot of, who has influenced you to do what you do?
CC: Courtney Love, The Cramps, Prince, Little Richard, Iggy Pop, Madonna, Queen, Sonic Youth, Darby Crash, the B-52s, and a lot more.
TN: Thanks, Cody!
Here’s the latest SSION video, an interview about the upcoming Live & Wet tour:
And here, for your diary, is the full SSION tour date schedule:
Previously on Dangerous Minds: