Many rock bands' personal experience of Mexican culture is limited to one too many shots of tequila. But Los Angeles punks the Bronx have embraced their SoCal roots to create their alter-ego, Mariachi El Bronx -- donning full South of the Border regalia, playing acoustic instruments and horns, and rocking out Mariachi-style.
"Mariachi music is every bit as much a soundtrack to southern California [as punk]," the group explains.
The quintet, which released a real punk album last fall, will drop their record as Mariachi El Bronx August 25. For the sessions, the band added Vincent Hidalgo, son of Los Lobos' David Hidalgo, to play the guitarrón, an oversized acoustic bass typical of the mariachi sound.
One of the record's best tracks is "Quinceniera" (listen below), a snappy tune with a hip-shaking Latin rhythm that's spicier than Salma Hayek (well, maybe not quite). "The dead can dance if they want romance," frontman Matt Caughthran sings. Olé!
LISTEN: The Bronx, "Quinceniera"