Mariachi El Bronx - Electric Circus, Edinburgh, Sun 20 Nov 2011
Joyous musical Mexperiment from punk quintet The Bronx
The fact that tonight’s gig has been moved to a much smaller venue is initially a cause for concern. Electric Circus is a substantial step down from the Liquid Room in terms of capacity – have ticket presales really been that slow? Will anyone turn up to this admittedly niche gig tonight? Will a half-empty room have the devastating effect of sapping the energy from what should be a joyous fiesta-style event?
Thankfully, these worries prove unfounded, and Mariachi El Bronx walk on to an enthusiastic and sizeable applause. Frontman Matt Caughthran is all smiles and geniality, thanking the crowd effusively while the rest of the band maintain a front of stoic mariachi professionalism. The audience respond well to Caughthran’s charm, cheering and clapping along with equal fervour to both new material – set opener ‘48 Roses’ and ‘Norteño Lights’ in particular – and older songs such as ‘Cell Mates’ from the band’s 2009 debut. If any of the crowd are aware that Mariachi El Bronx started as a side project for LA punk rockers The Bronx, it doesn’t make a difference – this bizarrely wonderful crossover has taken on a life of its own.