Mustard and Mr. Substitute had the pleasure of speaking with Tim and Brit of Catbite! Together we discussed their origins, politics in music, touring with Streetlight Manifesto, and so much more! There is also a surprise at the end! Check it out below!
1. Hello! Mustard would like to thank everyone for joining them. How is everyone?
BRIT: Hey mustard I’m doing OK I got a little bit of a cold right now but you know what I think maybe if I just eat some spicy mustard it’ll help my throat feel better
TIM: I’m doing great mustard I feel like I just put you in the fridge but now here we are doing an interview and I couldn’t be more stoked
2.Humans love origin stories. Can you all recall how Catbite came to be? Did you all know that “Catbite” was the band name or did you scratch around other names?
TIM: it’s a funny story mustard so I had the name catbite laying around for years and years and years. I always wanted to start a band called Catbite but just didn’t have the time, the people, the energy, the motivation, and confidence until one day my old ska band broke up, no we didn’t break up I left the band then they broke up. I started a new band with my hot fiancé and fellow cat lover and original bassist, Johnny Coyle, that I didn’t have a name for. I knew I wanted it to be ska and as soon as it got started we decided it was time for Catbite
BRIT: I didn’t have a name for the band and Tim has been wanting to name a band catbite for the longest time and I really liked the name so I said hey yeah let’s do it
3.It was a dog bite that helped you re-work your songs that would eventually become Nice One! How did this unfortunate incident help you reanalyze the album?
TIM: So Ben our bass player he broke up a dog fight at work, he’s a dog daycare manager and when he did that his arm got very much in the way of Winston (rip) and broke his arm that so that he couldn’t play bass. So we had to push the recording session back a couple months which gave us more time to look at our songs and kind of rework them and also created a bunch of chaos and panic and we do great under those circumstances
4.Yourselves, along with Jer (Skatune Network), Eichlers, and others on the Bad Time Records roster have been at the forefront of the current ska revival. How does it feel to see ska gain more recognition over the last few years?
TIM: it’s pretty wild and wacky! so I started playing ska when I joined my first band back in 2009 and did that for about nine years which was pretty much the darkest days of ska, you know? It was just that thing you know, ska didn’t have a lot of people coming out to the shows but you had to your select few people that I’ve met across the country that just really dug it and those are forever friends. But now the amount of people that have returned or are fresh fans of ska, it’s just really cool to see people paying attention and caring and coming out to shows and buying records and buying merch. There’s a great sense of community showing up and seeing it is absolutely amazing, kinda like when I discovered Grey poupon for the first time.
5.In today’s world, it’s very refreshing to have a band like Catbite take such a strong political stance towards equal rights for all, even selling some of your merch to help [Abortion funds]. In our current climate, do you think it is important for bands to take a political stance? Would you consider not taking a political stance, a stance on its own? How would you respond to someone who says music or art should not be political?
TIM: is mustard yellow? Abso- fucking-lutely! Staying silent and trying to please your fans or other “important” people does nothing to help anybody or any cause. At this point in the world, things are going off the rails completely and to stay silent will only allow loud idiots to be louder. I personally believe that if you have any platform at all and have any form of privilege like I do (ex. White, male etc.) it should be your duty to use that platform to push for basic human rights, at the bare minimum, especially in times like this.
BRIT: We may not be very political in our music but as people we are and we feel it necessary to fight and raise our voices in whatever platform we have available to us bc we are lucky enough to have one. Where so many BIPOC and queer people and low income people and marginalized peoples are hurting, I feel it’s our job to lift them and use our platform to help them speak.
6.You will be touring soon with Streetlight Manifesto. Is this the first time you’ve toured with them? What were your initial reactions when you found out? Do each of you have a favorite Streetlight Manifesto song? Additionally, you’ve got some shows with Anti-Flag coming up and will be traveling to Australia. Has Catbite taken the time to collect it all in?
TIM: last fall, out of the blue, I got a random text message from and unknown number. Turns out it was Tomas from Streetlight Manifesto! He wanted to know if our band wanted to play with his band! I said abso-fucking-lutely with some mustard on top. We then played 3 shows in December! They were the biggest shows we’d ever played and it was mind blowing! Fast forward a couple months and a few cat related text exchanges, Tomas reached out again and asked us to do a butt ton more shows together!! I didn’t grow up listening to much streetlight or catch 22 but they’re an incredible live band and their fans are the sweetest people and love to have a good time.
The first band I got into after my childhood obsession with Linkin park was anti flag! They were also my first show I went to on my own accord (with BTMI!) they’re also the first band that made me want to be in a band and do shit!
So being asked to play shows with them is really fucking cool! Pardon my French(‘s)!
BRIT: tbh, I’m still wrapping my head around going to Australia. Actually, I’m wrapping my head around us going on tour at all!! Especially with covid still being a very real issue for musicians, I’m so grateful to have opportunities to travel in the country, let alone another continent!! Touring has been a lifelong dream of mine. Before this last tour we did with Jeff Rosenstock in June, I had never been to any of the states that we played! So to say I’m grateful and thankful is an understatement.
7.Best road trip snack/activity and who determines who plays what in the van?
BRIT: Tim drives mostly and we all have to listen to hours and hours of the wild ride with steve-o podcast lolol
8.What’s the most Philly sentence y’all can think of?
9.Is there a movie that perfectly (or at least as closely as possible) encapsulates Catbite as a band?
TIM: Josie and the pussycats
BRIT: Coyote Ugly
10. What’s next for Catbite?
TIM: we’re releasing a ______ with ______ on _____ ______ _____ !
BRIT: Shortly followed by releasing _____/_____ on ______ on _______ ! (:
10. Where can readers listen to your music? Do you have a preferred platform?
TIM: watch our music videos on YouTube bc they’re really good and no one seems to know about themyout
BRIT: also we’re on Spotify, Apple Music, bandcamp, limewire, MySpace
Cap Unlocked: Catbite interviews JustSomeMustard
MUSTARD, we have some questions for you. Plz respond.
1. Do you consider spicy brown and Dijon to be the same thing? If not, plz clarify.
Mustard believes these are very similar but have slight differences. Mustard considers Spicy Brown to have bit more of a kick but Dijon is more refined in its taste. Both are excellent on a sub, hero, sandwich, whatever your human heart can desire. Mustard’s father is Grey Poupon.
2. Rate these mustards in order of least favorite to most favorite: classic yellow, grey poupon, mustard seeds, mustard gas, mustard plug, colonel mustard, mustard greens
Colonel Mustard, Mustard Gas, Mustard Seeds, Classic Yellow, Grey Poupon, Mustard Plug (don’t tell Mustard’s father this band outranked them)
3. Do you live in the pantry or in the fridge?
Majority of Mustard’s life is spent on a shelf or in a distribution warehouse. More often than not they live in the fridge. But Mustard enjoys this as they get to meet and hang out with other condiments such as mayo, ranch, ketchup (who is a full blown narcissist), and salad dressings!
One thought on “All Scratched Up with Catbite”
Great interview! Love Catbite, hope they’ll come to the UK some time soon!