Five years after the release of her debut EP, Opulence, Candy is gearing up for Sexorcism, her long-awaited debut LP featuring an all-star lineup of guest artists that speak to Candy's artistic proclivities. Surprisingly, despite the long gap between projects, Candy says Sexorcism came together quickly – four days, to be exact.
The album's short turnaround time meant Candy didn't work in the studio with many of the featured artists and created those tracks digitally, as is commonplace for much of the industry nowadays. “I didn’t actually get in the studio with a lot of them," she says, "but everyone I worked with was super-down to be a part of it." Candy says she was most excited about her collaborators' enthusiasm for the project. “I’m the type of person where in order for the best music to flow, I need to be having fun and not taking everything so seriously," she reflects, "and I work the best with artists who are the same way: People who don’t take everything super, super-serious and know how to have fun with it.”
This was the case for the creation of the album's lead single, "XXXTC," along with its accompanying video. Bronx-bred "femcee" Maliibu Miitch and electropop darling Charli XCX rap over the song's bass-heavy beat, channeling the same sex-positive energy for which Candy has always been known. When conceptualizing the visual, Candy knew she wanted to create something that is as fun for the viewer to watch as it is for her to make. "I’m not a fan of music videos with narratives, to be honest, so with 'XXXTC,' I just wanted to create something that was as visually stimulating as possible.”
Sexorcism has a bit of everything for everyone, which makes it the perfect gift for old fans as well as new ones. "Cum," a previously unreleased collaboration with Iggy Azalea, was one of Candy's favorites to put together. "I sent her the beat and I knew it would be the perfect fit. And, sure enough, she sent back this amazing and hilarious verse over it."
Because Candy's fans are largely LGBTQ listeners (and Candy is queer herself), it made sense for her to recruit artists such as Drag Race winners Aquaria and Violet Chachki for the delightfully naughty "Rim." Inspired in part by Madonna's Erotica album, the song mimics Madge's sexual muttering over house beats. “How could I do a song called 'Rim' and not have some big gay artists on it?” Candy laughs.
It's for that reason Candy has chosen to make her South Florida debut in Wilton Manors, regarded locally and nationally as one of the gayest cities in the country. Friday, October 18, Candy will take the stage at the Venue — the legendary Manor Complex's adjacent performance area — to perform selections from Sexorcism and Opulence, as well as other songs she's released along the way. "I'm becoming a lot more professional at [performing], and the energy just flows a lot better onstage than it has in the past," she says.
Still, Candy doesn't plan to perform many shows aside from a few scheduled dates. Instead, she yearns for peace away from the spotlight rather than the hectic and exhausting life of touring. It's for this reason she counts South Florida among her favorite places and why the region has become her go-to vacation spot. "There's just something about [South Florida] that I really vibe with," she muses, "so I'm really excited to just be there and put on a good show for a group of people that I love, in a space and a place that I love."
Brooke Candy. 8 p.m. Friday, October 18, at the Venue Fort Lauderdale, 2345 Wilton Dr., Fort Lauderdale; thevenuefortlauderdale.com. Tickets cost $20 to $50 via eventbrite.com.