aim for

Cute Is What We Aim For

Cute Is What We Aim For is a rock music band from Buffalo, New York. Formed in 2005, they are currently signed to Fueled by Ramen. They released their debut album, The Same Old Blood Rush with a New Touch, in 2006 and their sophomore offering entitled, Rotation, on June 24, 2008.



The band was formed in January 2005 by OTHS as a side-project by Cherry Bing singer Shaant Timothy Hacikyan (born November 7, 1986) and lead guitarist Jeff Martin Czum after tensions in the band rose. The band's name originated from the phrase "cute" with a friend in middle school . ("Cute" had become his trademark expression in middle school as a synonym for "cool"). However, in high school, Shaant was often seen as an outsider. When they decided to devote themselves fully to Cute Is What We Aim For, parting ways with their other bands was less than amicable. Some members of Shaant's former band, Cherry Bing, blamed Shaant for the demise of the group. Despite their efforts to start anew, Cute Is What We Aim For has been criticized for their past engagements and their band name, as well as allegations of plagiarism. Nevertheless, the band went on to record demos with multi-platinum producer Shep Goodman and Kenny Gioia, and managed to rapidly build a fanbase. A considerable amount of the band's swift success is likely thanks to the large amount of coverage received from online magazines. One such webzine,, featured band on their "Absolute Unsigned" feature, only to have the website's founder, Jason Tate, openly harass the band via the site's message board, accusing them of being marketing marionettes of their label and excessively using Auto-Tune on their debut album. Hacikyan and the album's producer, Matt Squire, admitted to using some Auto-Tune but denied the other allegations in the following AbsolutePunk interview.

However, the drama surrounding the band was further fueled when they announced that they were firing their manager, who accused them of unethical business practices, and underwent several line-up changes. In an effort to compensate for the absence of temporary bassist Don Arthur at a concert, Cimato permanently swapped his six-string for a bass guitar, while rhythm guitarist Chris Flury completed the quintet in November 2005. Although already suspected by fans due to several indications on the band's part, on November 29 2005, their signing with Fueled by Ramen was officially announced. Shortly thereafter, another line-up change occurred, when Flury and the band mutually agreed to part ways and Cute Is What We Aim For went on as a four-piece.

On June 20, 2006, Cute Is What We Aim For's debut album The Same Old Blood Rush With a New Touch hit store shelves, debuting at number 75 on the Billboard 200. With 13,651 in first week sales, the album broke the label's internal record set by Panic at the Disco's A Fever You Can't Sweat Out (2005) by almost 4,000 copies. As of January 2007, the album has sold 94,410 units. The Academy Is...'s William Beckett lent vocals to the album's first single "There's a Class for This", which openly addresses the band's ever-surrounding drama (culminating in the song's chorus "Drama doesn't follow me, it rides on my back/I may be ugly, but they sure love to stare"). The music video directed by Jay Martin premiered on mtvU on July 17, 2006. On February 26, 2007 the group's second single, "The Curse of Curves", was released. The video was directed by Lex Hallaby. For the band's third single, "Newport Living", the video was edited by Dylan Steinberg using various footage (over 15 hours) of the band members on tour plus a live show at The Metro in Chicago. The video was released on [[October 29], 2007.

By fall of 2006, Cimato had parted ways with the band, and Jack Marin(ex Ocotber Fall) became the new bassist. But just six months later, in April of 2007, Jack left because of personal issues with the band members. Cimato became the bassist for cute once again. In October 2007, Fred Cimato was interviewed by When asked if he viewed his role in the band as permanent (after returning in early 2007 many believed it was simply a temporary role) he replied, "Definitely permanent. I had 7 months at home to finish up high school and after that I was like, 'Wow, I miss playing music.' I was blessed enough to get that opportunity again." But the next March, Cimato left the band again. It was annouced that Dave Melillo would be their bassist until further noticed.

In early 2006, it was revealed that the group had signed with Fueled By Ramen. For the 2007 Vans Warped Tour, singer-songwriter Dave Melillo joined the band as a backup guitarist. He also joined them on the Young Wild Things tour with Fall Out Boy, Plain White T's, and Gym Class Heroes.

After their stint on the Young Wild Things Tour, the band has take some time off to continue writing for their second release. They have headed into the studio with producer John Feldmann. Their main website has been updated frequently of pictures from the individual band members iPhones. The album, simply called "Rotation", was finished on March 19, 2008, as stated on their website, and was released on June 24, 2008.


The name of Cute Is What We Aim For's new album was announced via their website, and also via forum "The Social Scene", on April 21, 2008. This coincided with a clip of their new single, "Practice Makes Perfect," being aired on MTV's The Hills. At midnight on April 22, the band then released another new song, "Doctor," via their MySpace. On May 6, "Practice Makes Perfect" became available on the iTunes Store.

The band then announced plans to play a four month tour in support of "Rotation" in both the United Kingdom and the States. They played in the UK from May 25 until June 2 before heading back home to the US to start the second leg of their tour on June 15 in Pittsburgh, PA; ending their tour on August 17 in Columbus, OH. Supporting for the US part of the tour was the Ace Enders, Danger Radio, and lable-mates Powerspace. Featured on that tour, as well as on the Canadian tour with Simple Plan, was former Dave Melillo Band guitarist Clark Spurlock.

On June 3, 2008, the band posted their newest song called "Safe Ride" onto their PureVolume page, with lyrics being posted on their official website.

Then on June 15, 2008 the band's music video for "Practice Makes Perfect" was released on MTV2's 'Unleashed'. The video was directed by Walter Robot and features all members of the band partaking in party behavior they later regret.

On September 2nd 2008, drummer, Tom Falcone, anounced that he would be leaving the band. Many speculated because the band was on tour and Falcone had been missing for a few shows. Falcone released an offical statement via stating that "I simply left the band because the personality conflicts and daily drama made it impossible for me to live a peaceful, happy life." Also adding that "I assure you that no one came looking for me." Shaant nor any of the other members have commented on the situation. Former Roses Are Red drummer Michael Lasaponara is currently filling in on drums.


  • Shaant Hacikyan – lead vocals (2005-present)
  • Jeff Czum – guitar/piano (2005-present)
  • Dave Melillo- bass/vocals (2008-present)
  • Mikey - drums (August 2008-present)

Former members

  • Rob Neiss - Drums (2005)
  • Fred Cimato – bass (2005-2006, 2007-2008)
  • Jack Marin – bass (2006 - 2007)
  • Tom Falcone - drums (2005-2008)




Year Title Album
2006 "There's a Class for This" The Same Old Blood Rush with a New Touch
2007 "The Curse of Curves"
"Newport Living"
2008 "Practice Makes Perfect" Rotation
2008 "Navigate Me" Rotation


External links

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