EXCLUSIVE Interview with MARISSA DATTOLI from CRYSTALYNE

By: Alexandria McLean | @itbalexandria 

Crystalyne's front-woman Marissa Dattoli | Alexandria McLean

Crystalyne, made up of Josh Given, Justin Niece, Scott Blake, and front-woman Marissa Dattoli, are Toronto’s next big thing! Having performed with the likes of Marianas Trench, and Carly Rae Jepsen, Crystalyne made a Toronto-only performance at this year’s Family Channel’s Big Ticket Summer Concert that fans won’t forget! Singing original songs, and a cover of 5 Seconds of Summer’s She Looks So Perfect, Crystalyne was the perfect start to the most anticipated concert of the summer!

The Magazine got the chance to sit down with lead singer Marissa Dattoli before the big show! She told us all about how Crystalyne became a band, and fangirling over Hayley Williams!

The Magazine: How did Crystalyne first become a band?

Marissa: The band sort of formed, we met through a mutual friend. The guys, the three of them are from St. Catherine’s/The Niagara Falls region, and I am from Toronto. We have a friend that actually moved to Toronto and I met, who knew the guys and he was like “You know, if you guys are looking to put a band together, there’s these really cool people and you should really meet up with them and jam.” We worked on a couple covers, just to kind of vibe each other out and obviously to meet each other. We literally just kind of fell in love with each other on our first session and went from there. We got offered a cross-Canada four-month tour about two weeks after. We were like let’s do this! Let’s be a band! It was really fast, but it just felt so natural. That is kind of how everything started and spiraled from there.

Crystalyne - Josh Given | Alexandria McLean

The Magazine: How would you describe your sound?

Marissa: I guess we just try and to be truthful to who we are. It is kind of like if we are feeling angry we will write a more aggressive song. If we are happy and carefree, we will go for that direction. But we really just try and embody emotion and tell stories through our music, so however that kind of translates instrumentally, it just is. We are not kind of like “Okay, we are pop-punk,” it is just kind of however we feel it becomes the songs.

The Magazine: Who are your musical inspirations?

Marissa: For us as a band, there are two bands that really inspire us as musicians and people, Blink 182 is huge for us, just because they were a really essential part of our music growing up and who we really listened to. As well, as Paramore who is really doing a similar thing to us, being female-fronted and not just being about Hayley Williams, it is about the band. I think that is kind of what Crystalyne is trying to do as well, just you know not so much we want to fit into that Paramore pocket, we want to be our own musicians. Do our own thing, but kind of follow a similar path. Those two bands inspire us as people and musicians and kind of on our journey to become whoever we want to be.

Crystalyne - Scott Blake | Alexandria McLean

The Magazine: In an earlier interview you mentioned you would cry if you got to meet Paramore, and then you met Hayley Williams! How was that? 

Marissa: It was amazing! I honestly didn’t know it was going to happen. I was literally sleeping and woke up, and have gotten a tweet from one of our fans who became a friend of ours. He was like “Do you want to meet Paramore?” and I was like is this guy joking, this isn’t real! He told me he had extra tickets to their meet and greet and you guys were the first people I thought of, and if you can come, I really want you to come! We were just like “Yeah! Of course we want to come!” So it was just so surreal, I touched them! I was in the same vicinity as them! Now that I met them, initially I was so afraid, I didn’t know what to say, it was so fast! Hopefully, it happens again in a different environment. Maybe at a show environment where I can actually talk to them and build a relationship, and ask them questions about things like their career, and what they are listening to and really find out who they are as people. I feel like musicians, even the musician to fan relationship, it is about connection and I think music is a really big part of that. It would be really cool to be able to have another in-depth relationship for sure.

Crystalyne's front-woman Marissa Dattoli | Alexandria McLean

The Magazine: What was going through your head when you found out you would be performing at the Molson Amphitheatre?

Marissa: Honestly, I thought it was a joke. We found out we were being considered for it at our Canadian Music Week showcase. We were approached by Live Nation and they said they loved our show! I thought that this can’t be real! This is a joke! They were really sincere, and they sent us the offer, and we were like yes! One-hundred percent, we were going to play this show! It’s the biggest show we have played in our hometown so we are really excited and Family Channel has been amazing through this whole experience. They are constantly communicating with us and really helping to promote us as a band. It is so great with the support we are receiving from them and Live Nation as well. It has been an amazing experience! It is so surreal. I never would have thought this would happen!

The Magazine: Another surreal thing is we have seen photos of your record in Japan! Can you tell us about that?

Marissa: We basically got an offer from a couple Japanese labels, but we decided to go with Kick Rock Invasion. We combined the Navigate and The Remedy EP into one sort of The Remedy record to release over there to sort of give fans over there a full idea of who we were. We didn’t just want to release one or the other, so we combined everything and worked together with the label. I think it is doing really well so far. The first couple months we had it out there the sales have been great! It is crazy to think that our record is in music stores in somewhere across the world! It is so cool. We always see tweets of the displays and I save them on my phone and refer back to them if I am having a bad day. I am like, it’s okay, there is a display in Japanese of our band! It’s so cool, so so cool!

Crystalyne - Justin Niece | Alexandria McLean

The Magazine: You also recently started a YouTube Channel for beauty, are the boys of Crystalyne maybe going to join in? Maybe see a band mates do my make-up video?

Marissa: Oh for sure! Justin has already openly communicated with me the second I posted the first video being like “Can I be in a video!” He loves fashion and stuff so he is on top of that already! I think that is a great idea! I think I actually might let them do my make-up one day and see what happens. I think that would be a great video.

Thanks Marissa!

Crystalyne will be heading out on tour to Japan later this month! Be sure to check out their super-fun new music video for Let It Go!

All photos were taken by the writer, all rights reserved.

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