Cut Throat Kids
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Cut Throat Kids

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | SELF

Toronto, Ontario, Canada | SELF
Band Pop Alternative


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Canadian Musician Showcase - Cut Throat Kids"

Toronto’s Cut Throat Kids can thank Paramore for once again making it perfectly acceptable for older dudes (and ladies) to get into female-fronted pop-punk. The quartet’s brand of punk is poppy, youthful, energetic, and catchy as hell.

Anyone who’s heard Paramore or whichever band graces this month’s Alternative Press cover has likely heard this type of sound before, but vocalist Tyler Tasson’s voice provides enough reason alone to make us instantly forgive their slight lack of originality.

That isn’t to say the band can’t play, though. They make a lot more noise than you’d expect from a foursome and they’ll make the partier in you want to dance just as much as your inner-rocker will want to fist pump. They’ve clearly put a lot of work into their self-titled EP, and if they focus their energies as well as this over the rest of their career, we should be blessed with album-after-album of guilt-free pop punk. If that’s not good for the soul, what is? - Canadian Musician Magazine

"Kickin’ it with the Cut Throat Kids"

Cut Throat Kids, a pop / alternative / pop punk band, took to the stage at the TIMAs “Indie/Pop/Rock” Showcase at The Central on August 19. This band has an energetic and professional live performance. They echo that they definitely live for the “live show”. Without doubt, they give an interesting, thought provoking, and amazingly articulate interview.

Tyler Tasson – vox

Jeff Raposo – guitar

Nick Chang-Fong – bassist

Calvin Castellino – drums

BD: How do you prepare before a show?

Jeff: Our shows get pretty physical so we like to make sure we stretch out a bit whenever possible. Personally, I like to spend a few minutes alone and just ground myself, make sure I’m breathing.

Tyler: (laughing) Yeah, we always do a big, huge, group stretch before going on stage. I think it creeps out and or interests a lot of onlookers! I like to get somewhere to run through some scales and get my voice ready. It usually ends up being a bathroom.

BD: Do you have a really memorable show? One where everything lined up for the band?

Jeff: I love playing in Whitby because we have a lot of friends in other bands that we get to play with when we head up that way. It always feels like a big party.

Tyler: A memorable show for me was playing a Ryerson residence frosh a few weeks back. Everyone was so excited and so open to hearing every song we had, even though they had never heard us before. We have never had such an intense crowd before. I, also, always do love playing in Whitby.

Calvin: Whitby was definitely memorable for me at Johnny B’s where, like Jeff said, all of our friends were also playing. It always boosts the chemistry, I find, within and outside the band when the crowd see you having fun with all of your friends in addition to your band mates.

BD: How do you fuel your passion for writing your music?

Jeff: I never really feel like I need to make an effort in that department. The passion is there. Trying to channel that into a structured piece of music that people will understand is what I try to focus on.

Tyler: If I really feel like telling a story about my own life, I’ll try to read back on things that remind me of whatever I am trying to write about, like an old diary or looking at little memorabilia from that time. I try to get into my own head and pull out the core feelings I felt at the time of whatever was happening and translate them directly into my songs.

Calvin: Inspiration from other music definitely fuels my passion for writing music. My favourite bands never cease to amaze me. It drives me to try and create something that will have the effect that one of my favourite artists has on me for another individual.

Nick: My passion for writing music is powered by my passion for enjoying music. I try to do for people what some have done for me.

BD: When you’re first starting out, everyone’s a critic. What sorts of things have you had to face and, ultimately, overcome?

Tyler: Personally, I have had to deal with the fact that people will be jerks and either judge me based on the fact that I am a girl or assume I have some kind of advantage because of it. I get stereotyped a lot because of my gender and it’s something you just gotta learn to brush off and ignore.

Calvin: Everyone has an opinion and, ultimately, you have to take it in stride and not let it get you down. It’s always comforting to know that if, hypothetically, we have 8 bad reviews in a row, we know for a fact that there are kids who wear our shirts to our shows and know the words to our songs. That definitely would overshadow the bad reviews. Luckily, everyone has been kind to us and dig the songs and the live show.

BD: What strategies do you have to get your music out there?

Tyler: So far, we stick to the conventional method of myspace and giving out demos at shows. Once we get our EP finished, it will be put out in as many places as we can get it!

Calvin: Tyler has been really killer with the myspace and I know we don’t thank her enough. She is really interactive with everyone that we add or adds us. We just want everyone to hear us and we want to be as accessible as possible.

BD: Do you have a motto you live by?

Jeff: I remember being drunk at a wedding once, having just broken up with a girl I was absolutely in love with. I was feeling pretty down and one of my cousins told me that all I could do was “love what comes”. That’s stuck with me in a pretty big way.

Tyler: “You get what you give.” Oh, and “A wise man will make more opportunities than he finds.” Two I try to live by day to day.

Calvin: “Work like slaves, eat like kings.”

Nick: “If you’re not having fun, why do it at all?”

BD: What advice would you give to up and coming artists and bands?

Jeff: People pay to see other people just “be” – that’s what makes reality tv so popular. More importantly, they can always spot a fake. What makes the entertainment industry so difficult is that it takes a lot of balls to be you in front of strangers. So the best way to set yourself apart is to just go out there as yourself. It may be a theatrically-enhanced version, but always an extension of the real you. Play as many shows as you can with as many different bands as you can. Make friends with all of them because the only way you’re ever going to make it is with their support. Most importantly, remember that this is one of the most competitive industries in the world. You can’t afford not to kill it every single time you play.

Tyler: Learn to take constructive criticism, no matter what. You have your own view of your band that is different than what other people see. You aren’t the one watching from the audience or listening with the outsider’s ear. Take criticism. This doesn’t have to mean that you change your music, style, or anything like that. Just listen to opinions with an open mind.

Calvin: Don’t be afraid to commit yourself 100%. There are people who I know that give up on bands because they say they are consumed with work or school. I really believe that if you’re committed 100% to playing music you could make time be it once a month to practice or write. You can still get it done. Dedication is key because I really think that everything else will follow.

Nick: Be an artist before a superstar. Make music or art that is relevant to you or that you enjoy. Popularity may or, in many cases, may not come but that’s not important. What is important is that you create honest works of art. After all, what good would popularity be if you couldn’t sleep at night?

BD: What life advice would you give them? What have you learned? About yourself? About life?

Tyler: People will always try to bring you down. If you learn to ignore it, or even better, to somehow feed off it, you will last a long time. Turning people’s negative attitudes into positive reinforcement for yourself is something that takes time but will help your confidence like crazy. Especially when others are trying to break you apart.

Calvin: Make sure you’re happy doing what you’re doing because there is no point in creating something that doesn’t get by your personal standards. Chances are others will pick up that you’re not having a good time doing what you’re doing. Playing in other bands and comparing it to the situation I’m in now, I can’t believe that I put up with certain elements that made me unhappy for so long. This is the perfect situation for me now. I can sincerely say that I love my band mates and the music that we’re making.

Nick: Listen to your critics but don’t work for them. I’ve learned that it’s important to make a product that you can stand behind and that authenticity is more important than anything. Don’t confuse authenticity with originality. If your music isn’t the first in a new, groundbreaking genre but you’re happy with it, hold onto it.

BD: A music industry insider has recently made the statement that artists are in partnership with their audience and that the long-term, more affordable route is where it’s at – as opposed to a Top 40 track and instant tour. Basically, don’t go for world domination. Go for a little piece of the whole rock. What are your feelings on this?

Tyler: I feel a bit from both sides. I definitely think it is beneficial for an artist to do as much as they can on their own. You make all the money, keep all the creative control and so on. I also feel like if you get into the Top 40 world and help is needed from management, labels, like that, then good for you! As long as you keep the creative control, I think it’s all good. Make a deal that works for you and, if you get in a position to bargain for your deals, even better! Being close to your audience is important either way. Having a good connection between you and them is so important to your career in the long run.

Calvin: There are two perspectives to this, I feel. For the artist who wants instant fame, that sucks. But for the band that wants to stand the test of time in this day and age of rapid technological advancement, it’s probably dead on.

Nick: I agree with that. I would rather be involved on a smaller, longer journey than a large, short one. Don’t go for world domination, yes. But, if the world wants you, bring it to them.

BD: What’s next?

Tyler: An EP, maybe a new photo shoot, lots of shows, a mini tour, who knows! Keep checking on the myspace to find out! (smiling)

Calvin: New songs! All day every day!

Nick: After this, some breakfast, some school, some fun then the next day. One day at a time, people! (everyone laughs) - Toronto Independent Music Awards

"Majors Host Concert"

Young fans of the Mississauga St. Michael's Majors can enjoy a post-game concert at the Hershey Centre.
This Friday, the Ontario hockey League club, in partnership with Indie Love Radio, will host a post-game concert at the arena. Mississauga band Cut Throat Kids will perform.
"We want to create an exciting atmosphere (with) value-added programs for our fans," said Majors' public relations manager Mike Masaro. "We'd also like to help promote local talent and we feel these concerts will help to meet our goals."
Masaro said the post game concerts will continue in the new year.
Fans can download a $2-off ticket voucher for Friday's game by visiting the band's website at
Meanwhile, Cut Throat Kids has posted several songs from an upcoming album on the band's website. They include Bring It Down, This House, Little Sparks, Feed Me and Grounded.
The band includes bassist Nick Chang-Fong, drummer Calvin Castellino, guitarist Jeff Raposo and vocalist Tyler Tasson.
Prior to the concert, the Majors host the Sarnia Sting. Game time is 7:30 p.m.
For tickets, call 905-502-7788 or visit - The Mississauga News

"Band drops new album"

Mississauga's Cut Throat Kids will celebrate the release of their new album with a concert on Saturday at the Mod Club in Toronto.
The band, comprised of bassist Nick Chang-Fong, drummer Calvin Castellino, guitarist Jeff Raposo and vocalist/guitarist Tyler Tasson, is expected to hit the stage at 11 p.m. for the free concert.
The band has made one of its new songs, Already Gone, available for preview. It can be heard by visiting - The Mississauga News - Chris Clay

"Internet Radio Tuning In"

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Musician Alan Sochan has invested about $100,000 and more than two years of his life in a "wing and a prayer and a hunch we're onto something."

That something is an Internet radio station that plays music exclusively from affiliated independent Canadian artists. Indie Love Radio ( launched on Canada Day in 2007 and now includes 3,000 acts, including 700 from Greater Toronto, in genres ranging from hip-hop to country.

Last month, it started to sell downloadable songs from its roster of musicians. On Wednesday it finalized an advertising deal with Cameron's Brewing Company, a small brewery in Oakville, which was sold on the website's metrics.

"The numbers without question impressed me," said Mike Laba, head of marketing for Cameron's. "I've been in the beer industry for seven years and been in talks with a lot of radio stations as far as what they can deliver in listenership, and what Indie Love has isn't far off from what the big radio stations are doing."

That's sweet news to Sochan, who was driven to create Indie Love after the music industry shunned him and the album he released in the mid-1990s.

"I realized you could send your stuff off to 100 people at different stations and not get one reply," said the 39-year-old from Toronto. "It's possible my stuff sucked, but I don't think that matters. If you're not represented by a record company, your CD is just going to be put on a shelf. I felt pretty hopeless, but also felt I wasn't the only one and I knew there weren't enough places to go where people would support you."

In early 2007, Sochan scoured the Internet for independent artists and invited many of them to join his fledgling enterprise.

"The reason we think we'll keep an audience is because of our niche," says Sochan. "If the Black-Eyed Peas come out with a hit single, sure, you're not going to hear it on our station, but that's okay. We're here for Canadian musicians whose talent isn't getting the attention it deserves and we're also building a network of bands who are helping to get the word out on their own."

One recent sign-up is Mississauga's Cut Throat Kids, who headlined the first of a regular series of Indie Love concerts sponsored by Steam Whistle Brewing on Thursday night. Singer Tyler Tasson says the opportunity to be spotlighted in the Gladstone Hotel show and from coast to coast on radio is a gift for musicians struggling to break out of their local markets or from crowded Internet platforms.

"MySpace is so oversaturated and you need somewhere to channel music out to people, and at Indie Love they take the time to listen to good bands," says Tasson, 20, whose group is polishing songs that soon will be for sale on the station's website for $2 each.

The artists keep $1 from every sale while the Toronto-based company takes 70 cents and pays a 30-cent transaction fee to PayPal, the online payment processor. On Apple's iTunes, the biggest music seller in North America, songs cost 69 cents, 99 cents or $1.29, and artists keep about 10 per cent on each sale, although that share can vary greatly depending on recording contracts.

While all independent artists can sign up to sell their music in the Indie Love store, the volunteer DJs control the playlist for the station's 15 programs. They're limited to the Indie Love catalogue but aren't mandated to play anything in particular from it, says Anny Slama, who hosts a show on Saturdays. The DJs spend hours preparing for shows and volunteering in other ways. Slama says she makes the effort in part because of Sochan's lead. "It's definitely motivating to see someone pour his heart and soul – and every penny he has – into something."

One key investment was a $5,000 digital-to-analog converter that produces a rich, consistent sound by allowing computer audio files to be remastered on a studio mixing board before being streamed on the Internet.

The website receives about 50,000 visits a day and listeners spend more than an hour per visit – "well above the average of major radio stations," says Laba. Although his company's initial commitment is only $2,500 in sponsorship of an upcoming Indie Love event, he said Cameron's "will be looking to do much more going forward with online advertising."

Sochan feels his aim of making a profitable business from supporting Canadian musicians is near. If Indie Love succeeds, he might return to his music career.

"This is the biggest backup plan ever," he says. "Plus, I know if I ever do put out another record, I'll always be played on my station." - Toronto Star


It starts out with a healthy drum roll, the kind played in a very certain way, like they’ve been played that fast and that hard every time one million times over. I love real drums and a nice dose of fast real drumming will get me into whatever you’re doing. Cut Throat Kids are girl fronted pop-punk, pure and simple; their self titled EP delivers it as concise as can be, fast drums, young, rebellious, and still a little fun. It’s a valid position that affirms some angsty kids are going to sing pop-punk forever, for those ones let’s say this is more than a “little fun.”
Because I know that anyone who actually enjoys making music equally hates being compared to passing trends I will not compare this band to their notable girl fronted pop punk foe. Instead, and from what I hear, I want to compare this band to some really incredible bands that paved the way making catchy pop-punk like Tsunami Bomb and Zolof the Rock N Roll Destroyer. Cut Throat Kids are really a part of this tradition. They play fast, fun, songs and they deliver on some fundamental aspects of the genre that are terribly important for any band taking this seriously. The Toronto based foursome combine trusty drum work, driving and firm basslines, and distorted riffs from a guitar that only plays loud (that’s just how loud half-stacks are). Standout tracks on the short EP are the opener “Already Gone” and the totally fast fun jam highlighting Pennywise type background chants on “This House.”
I should specify that this record is still totally clean pop-punk, think bands like Reliant K, just add a little bit of edge. It’s not raunchy like the Distillers. The Cut Throat Kids have a good place here. They are obviously a talented bunch of pop-punkers with a lot of drive and some good support from their homeland, they understand the genre, and above all else they write good songs. As long as they keep writing good songs, Cut Throat Kids will make a big impression on the genre.

More about Cut Throat Kids:
The stage is nowhere new for Cut Throat Kids. In fact, having been practicing as a unit and in previous bands for years now, they are already looking for a bigger one. Their sound refined and their ambitions big, the foursome have already begun to establish a burgeoning reputation, playing shows in and around downtown Toronto. The band is comprised of (in alphabetical order) drummer Calvin Castellino, bassist Nick Chang-Fong, guitarist Jeff Raposo, and vocalist Tyler Tasson, all of whom hail from the city limits of Toronto.
Though their influences are varied, the group’s greatest asset is perhaps their cohesiveness, along with their uncanny ability to read each other onstage and in the practice space. The result is an energetic and professional live performances played by musicians whose attention to craft, youthful exuberance, and practiced approach to live music is instantly apparent. There’s no pretense surrounding Cut Throat Kids; their primary concern is simply to entertain, to reach an audience looking for sharp, catchy, and concise pop/alternative songs that instantly grab your attention and don’t let go until they’re finished. - Clint Sleeper, Contributing Editor of Sleeper Album Reviews

"Cut Throat Kids - Cut Throat Kids EP"

Cut Throat Kids - Cut Throat Kids [EP]
2010, Cut Throat Kids

Toronto punk/pop quartet Cut Throat Kids are quickly gaining a reputation for high energy shows with a sheen of professionalism that belies their collective youth. Vocalist Tyler Tasson has the sort of unaffected voice that makes you like her instantly as she tackles fun, high-energy songs with aplomb. In concert with Calvin Castellino (drums); Nick Chang-Fong (bass) and Jeff Raposo (guitar); Tasson dips and dives through five dynamic songs on Cut Throat Kids self-titled EP.

Cut Throat Kids opens with "Already Gone", a song about getting out before things fall apart. Driven by an insatiable pop sensibility, "Already Gone" never rests, and Tasson voices it like a personal mantra. This is a song you just have to dance to, even if you don't like to dance. "This House" is a song about sx as a means of attention rather than love. Tasson uses brief and subtle word association style lyrics in the chorus to gloss over the intimacy in favor of the issue of attention. All of this is done at a frenetic pace that will inspire the requisite dancing and toe-tapping. Cut Throat Kids slow things down a bit with "Bring It Down", a song about hidden liaisons and one person's desire for there to be more. There's a slow build of angst here that's parallel to a growing discomfort with the hidden nature of the relationship exposed. "Feed Me" turns the metronome back up in an emotionally laden exposition of a relationship where trust has been destroyed by lies. The energy here is solid, but the song doesn't quite connect on the level that previous tracks have. Cut Throat Kids closes with "The Last One", an exploration of relationship angst that grows from comparing yourself to your partner's ex(es). Tasson sings with an intensity and commitment here that speaks of the inherent insecurity that drives the song, and the arrangement is sufficiently catchy to indicate real potential as a single.

Cut Throat Kids are a high energy band with punk vitality, the effervescence of youth, and a professional mien that seems to be well beyond their years. There's nothing affected here, just honest, energetic rock n roll. Even where Cut Throat Kids explore the greyer areas of human interaction and emotion, the arrangements are bright and driven. This is a band that's going places, and their self-titled debut EP is worth making room in your collection for. - Wildys World Reviews

"Band's back after break-up"

By: Chris Clay

January 6, 2009 09:24 PM - As the old saying goes, you can't keep a good band down.
Just ask the guys in Mississauga rock act, Cut Throat Kids, which makes its stage debut this Saturday at The Opera House in Toronto.
Bassist Nick Chang-Fong, drummer Calvin Castellino and guitarist Jeff Raposo performed for several years with local band, Letters to Elora. But when the band broke up last summer, the guys almost immediately set about starting a new act.
While auditioning singers, they happened upon Tyler Tasson. After listening to the young woman sing, the band knew she was the perfect fit for Cut Throat Kids.
"The way she was singing made me want to play harder," said Castellino, 21. "We played one of our new songs for her and she came up with lyrics for it (on the spot)."
The jamming turned into the song, Grounded, which made its way onto the band's four-song demo that was recently recorded at Caledon's Paragon Music, with Sam Guaiana. That track, plus Feed Me and This House, can be heard by visiting
The music is buoyant and catchy, with a tinge of punk thrown in for good measure.
Castellino, who lives in the City Centre, said they weren't trying to distance themselves from Letters to Elora when creating music for Cut Throat Kids. They just made music and decided to let it speak for them.
"We're not limiting ourselves; what we want is just to have the music define who we are as a band (and not anything else)," he said.
This Saturday marks the first time Cut Throat Kids will play together as a group.
"We've never played The Opera House before and it's always cool to go and see one of your favourite bands there and then have a chance to play the same place," said Castellino. "We're pretty excited."
Several other bands, including Mississauga's Dead End Girl, which headlines, are also on the bill.
Show time is 7:30 p.m. Tickets cost $15 and can be purchased at the door.
The band also hopes to release an album by the end of 2009. Considering how happy they are, getting a CD out shouldn't be a problem.
"We're in a very good place," said Castellino. "I've never been this proud in terms of the recordings. It means a lot to me and I'm (sure) the same goes for the rest of the band." - Mississauga News

"Band Nabs Best Punk Award"

Mississauga's Cut Throat Kids walked away winners from the 2010 Toronto Independent Music Awards, held last Friday.
The band — bassist Nick Chang-Fong, drummer Calvin Castellino, guitarist Jeff Raposo and vocalist/guitarist Tyler Tasson — took home the Best Punk award by beating out Streetcore, The Away Game, Saving Fiction and No Right Turns.
The band released its new five-track EP earlier this summer. The album, which features two new tracks and three reworked songs, was recorded with Matthew von Wagner (Ubiquitous Synergy Seeker, Crystal Castles).
Cut Throat Kids debuted the new album during a concert earlier this month at the Mod Club.
In June, the band performed at the Velvet Underground as part of NXNE.
The band formed a few years back when Chang-Fong, Castellino and Raposo were looking for a vocalist. They found Tasson during an audition and knew almost immediately she'd be a great fit.
Mississauga vocalist Vandana Vishwas, who received an honourable mention at the 2010 MARTY Awards, was nominated in the Best World Music category while Meadowvale rapper David Di Stefano, who goes by Triple D, received a nomination in Best Live — Urban.
Mississauga-bred vocalist Basia Lyjak was nominated in the Best Alternative Rock category.
- The Mississauga News

"Cut Throat Kids, the Strange, Conflicted, MAGNOLIUS Among Toronto Independent Music Awards Winners"

The Toronto Independent Music Awards (TIMA) honours the best up-and-coming Ontario indie musicians. This year was the fifth instalment of the ceremony, which took place at the Phoenix Concert Theatre on Friday evening (July 23), and we have this year’s winners.

Among the winners this year are Conflicted (Best Metal), the River Junction Band (Best Country), Richh Kidd (Best Live Urban), Cut Throat Kids (Best Punk), MAGNOLIUS (Best Rap) and the Strange (Best Indie Rock).

Since there was no ceremony last year, this instalment of the TIMAs covered 2009 to 2010, with $60,000 worth in prizes given away in 20 different categories. The industry-related prizes included a song released on Canadian radio (Best Song), an all-expenses-paid European tour (Best Live Electric), a pro photo session (Best Alternative Rock) and in-store song placements (best pop).

The artists awarded are all Ontario-based and 100 percent owned and operated out of Canada (except for distribution deals). The only exception is the Best International/Best USA/Best Out-of-Province category. - Exclaim Magazine


Cut Throat Kids EP
Already Gone
This House
Bring It Down
Feed Me
The Last One

Engineered by Matthew Von Wagner (Crystal Castles, USS)

Already Gone - first single



There’s no pretense surrounding Cut Throat Kids; their primary concern is simply to entertain, to reach an audience looking for sharp, catchy and concise pop/alternative songs that instantly grab your attention and don’t let go until they’re finished.

Their sound refined and their ambitions big, the foursome have already begun to establish a burgeoning reputation, playing shows in and around Ontario. The band is comprised of (in alphabetical order) drummer Calvin Castellino, bassist Nick Chang-Fong, guitarist Jeff Raposo and vocalist Tyler Tasson, all hailing within the Toronto city limits.

The band’s cohesiveness (along with their uncanny ability to read each other onstage and in the practice space) results in an energetic and professional live performance. When you go to see them, you get a band whose attention to craft, youthful exuberance, and practiced approach to live music is instantly apparent.

“…buoyant and catchy, with a tinge of punk thrown in for good measure” – Chris Clay, The Mississauga News

“…they successfully pull off a set of fun songs that follow unconventional formulas and rhythms…their music doesn’t sound like Josie and the Pussycats pop. There’s a lot of rock ‘n’ roll edge that is greatly appreciated.” – Sheena Lyonnais,

“Catchy melodies that wander your head for ages. Cut Throat Kids bring back the music that you cant wait to listen to over and over again!” – Jessica Di Loreto, Acid City Magazine

Winner of the Toronto Independent Music Award for Best Punk Band 2009/2010

Winner of the Protools Presents “Avid’s Band to Watch” juried competition 2009

Recipient of a FACTOR Demo Award Grant 2009/2010