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Bronx Frontman Needs Books on Tour, Digs Metalhead Following

The Bronx are one of those bands all manner of rock fan can appreciate. They’re innovative, with thought-provoking music that pummels the senses. They are, without question, one of the best things to happen to hardcore punk in the last 10 years. But the band diverts from its sound on ‘El Bronx,’ the mariachi album they released on Aug. 25 as Mariachi el Bronx, their alter ego.

For the next two months, the band will be touring Europe, Japan and Australia, before heading back to the states to finish writing their next release, which frontman Matt Caughthran promises will be a return to form. But does the band feel any pressure from its fans to really deliver on what will be their fourth eponymous effort?

“We don’t feel it so much from our fans, but we put pressure on ourselves,” the frontman admits. “We definitely don’t want to do the same thing twice. That drives the band more than anything … continuing to create original stuff. I think that our fans definitely appreciate the effort that we put into everything that we do. It’s something we take very seriously. We don’t feel pressure from the fans to deliver, but we do pressure ourselves to do something different every time.”

We caught Caughthran mid-pack — as he prepared for the band’s flight to Oslo, Norway earlier this week — and chatted with the singer about what he takes with him on the road. While he admits it changes every time, he does confess to needing books to bide his time on the tour bus.

“I remember when we first started touring, It seemed like I packed my entire life,” he says. “I took every article of clothing, CDs, books, DVDs … I don’t know what I was thinking. Now, I’ll be gone for a more than a month, and I’ve crammed everything into a regular backpack. That’s definitely changed.”

What books will he be reading? Well, one is by Charles Bukowski, and it’s a collection of his short stories called ‘The Most Beautiful Woman in Town & Other Stories.’ The other is called ‘Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking.’ “It’s a self-help book about trusting your instincts and not over-thinking things. I tend to over-think a lot, so I am trying to fix that.”

When the Bronx are back on the road here in the states, Caughthran says he can’t wait to play for the band’s metalhead fan base again.

“I don’t know how we managed to get metalhead fans, but every tour we go on, we’re usually the oddball,” he says. “We’ve done a lot of metal tours with High on Fire, Converge and Mastodon, so, being an oddball — and having the guts to go on a tour like that — I think that wins us a lot of respect. People like things that are different. At the end of the day, the music has to be good. You can’t just be different. So it’s a mixture of talent and the balls to go and do different stuff is probably why we’re getting respect from the metalheads.”

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