It’s been a while since we’ve been this excited about a show in Asbury Park. Mariachi el Bronx at Asbury Lanes this Sunday is just what we needed to knock the stale off of a miserable winter.

But it also reminds us of how sad we’ll be when the day finally comes when Asbury Lanes isn’t there anymore – when the dipshits from iStar/Asbury Partners (the current owners of the land Asbury Lanes sits on) have there way. They’ll knock down this vintage 1960s bowling alley and world renowned music venue in favor of horrible looking Hovnanian built townhouses without blinking an eye. That’s what you do when you’re soulless. When making money trumps (no pun there) history, culture and the like. That will be the downfall of Asbury Park. White guys in dark suits.

The fact of the matter is some of the best music I’ve ever seen has been at The Lanes. This Sunday will continue that.

Mariachi el Bronx is a case of split personality. On the one side is a bunch of American dudes from Southern California dressed in full on Mariachi outfits singing their interpretation of Mexican folk music, in English nonetheless. The flipside is the hardcore band they are most known for, The Bronx. Both couldn’t be more different from one another.

In fact, Mariachi el Bronx was born from a Bronx show when the band avoided doing an acoustic set of their music. The result was their Mexican alter ego. So now the band tours sometimes as The Bronx, sometimes as Mariachi el Bronx and sometimes both on the same bill.

The first time I saw the band was on a Rocks Off boat cruise around Manhattan. Hands down one of the best shows I’ve ever seen. The first night was The Bronx. The second night was Mariachi el Bronx. Both levels of the boat were packed. It was surreal listening to these guys with the sun setting on New York and the Statue of Liberty so close you could touch it.

Mariachi el Bronx can be confusing. My Polish girlfriend asked me once when she heard them for the first time, “why are these guys singing Mariachi in English?” not knowing they were a bunch of American white guys – ok and one Asian. But that’s part of their charm. It might seem like a gimmick at first. But you quickly realize how good these guys are. Musically they are completely on point. And

Matt Caughthran is as good as it gets when it comes to vocals. The band is currently working on their third album.

The Lanes should hopefully packed on Sunday night. And I’ll celebrate the fact that the doors of this place are still open. And hope for more nights like this before the wrecking ball finally has its way.

Asbury Lanes is located at 209 4th Ave in Asbury Park. More info at 

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