The Bronx are returning for an Australian tour with punk legends Pennywise as well as playing a few of their own headline shows. It’s a really good vibe in the band right now with the release of their new album V and playing some of the best shows of their careers. Hi Fi Way: The Pop Chronicles spoke to Matt Caughthran as they were finishing up their tour in the States as was looking forward to getting home for a few days and taking a “shower”.
It must be an awesome vibe happening in The Bronx camp at the moment with so many great things going on?
Yeah man, we’ve got a new record coming out and obviously everyone is super stoked. We’ve been on tour in the States playing all these shows with bands Plague Vendor and ’68, it has been the most fun we have had in a long time and we have a lot of fun in this band. It really says something about the vibe at the minute, everyone feels great.
Australia definitely loves The Bronx, it must be the best place to tour outside of The States for the band?
It is one hundred percent! There are great places to play all over this world and the world is an amazing place but absolutely Australia is number one for me. Outside the love and respect they have for the band it is my kind of place and every time we go there we have the best time. The shows are always off the hook and we never want to leave. We are looking forward to this tour with Pennywise and doing some headline shows. At the end of this tour in San Diego we have two days off and collect ourselves, take a shower and then we head to Australia.
Touring with Pennywise must be a huge buzz particularly here in Australia? Must be one of the concert bills of the year?
I agree, this is the stuff we love doing putting together shows and events that are just guaranteed to be completely insane. I’m looking forward to them, the whole band is and we have been fortunate to be very tight with the Pennywise guys for some time now and we have been looking to tour for ages but not everything was able to line up until now. Australia is the perfect place for it plus they are doing the anniversary of Full Circle which is a fucking awesome record. It’s going to be good times man!
Do you feel incredibly proud of what you have been able to achieve with new album V? The word on the street is that it is an awesome album…
Thank you man! We’re definitely proud of it, we went through a lot to get to the point where we could even make this record. Being in a band is a grind, it is a beautiful grind but it definitely is a grind. Some years are harder than other and the last couple of years have been tough. To get to this point now to get a record not only we love but people seem to be enjoying. It validates a lot of stuff and makes everything and all the bullshit that you have go through sometimes in the industry makes it worth it. We’re stoked!
You described this album in some interviews as being a rebirth for The Bronx. Is that how you still see it?
Yeah, for us, every time you write a record there is a little bit of that and because of the nature of the record you’re shedding skin in a lot of ways. It is a process like that regardless but where the band was at in making the record it was intensified because there was a lot of transitioning going on in the band and a lot of transitioning going on for everyone in their own lives in general. It was a fight to get to where we are at and in many more ways than just a regular record writing this is a rebirth of the band.
Judging by the raw intensity of Sore Throat and Two Birds did you have that feeling that the band nailed this album?
Err yeah, I have been fortunate to feel that way about every record that we have done. Luckily we haven’t experienced the process of making a record and then you start thinking oh I don’t know about this… that’s not good! The studio can be hell if that is the case, such a nightmare! When we were doing The Bronx II there was a little bit of that because it took so long and we were sitting in it for too long. All of a sudden it turns in to bath water type sit but when we were making this new record it felt good and everyone was on the same page to the enth degree. Rob Schnapf produced a great record and everyone was one a hundred the whole time. It was really, really special.
Did this album challenge you like the others?
No, no it was pretty easy man! I’m going to be honest with you this album was a breeze. We usually spend two months writing then about one month recording and that is The Bronx way of how we approach it. Joby and I will write songs for about a year, basic ideas but when it comes time to go ok these songs could be cool, these ones aren’t really good and that type of thing. Once we figure that out it is two months of making these ideas songs, getting them tight, getting them rehearsed, getting them ready to go and then spend a month in the studio. That seems to work well for us and that’s pretty much what we did on Four even though it was a bit harder to make. This time everyone was focused and in tune, it was easy, once we got going it was easy and a lot of fun.
Do you feel just about unstoppable as a band at the moment with the momentum that you have got?
Absolutely! It feels really good, we just riding it right now. The record is barely out and we’re just getting started. The vibe feels really good and we are having a blast playing the record live. We’re ready to go, we don’t want to stop any time soon. It feels great and we’ll try and stay in the moment.
Is 2018 predominantly focused on touring and is Mariachi El Bronx simmering away in the background?
For sure! It probably won’t be a record year for El Bronx, there will be another record coming down the pipeline eventually but right now we’ll focus on Bronx, playing these shows and touring most of next year. That’s where we are at the moment but El Bronx is still alive and well and will be something we will continue in the future.
Interview by Rob Lyon
Catch The Bronx support Pennywise on the following dates and their own headline shows