Part six of the legacy
One thing that is great about reviewing an album by The Bronx is you never really have the wonder what album number it is; for example, the band’s newest piece is their sixth album, Bronx VI. The band has also released a few records under their alter ego, Mariachi El Bronx, which earned them a spot on our best albums of the decade for the 2010s. So, to say the least, the standards for this one are high.
Before the band released the record, they shared some songs off of it. Actually, it was almost half of the songs featured on the album and most recently their track “Peace Pipe.” Throughout the album, The Bronx shows that even six albums later, they still kick it. Fast guitar riffs, some solos and generally a kick-ass attitude. From track one, “White Shadow,” they deliver 110% and non-stop energy.
For a punk album, the record is relatively clean, with only two songs labeled as explicit. “Peace Pipe,” one of these explicit songs, channels the band’s California background throughout. It’s not really a pop-punk track a la blink-182, but it certainly features some delicate notes in that way. It’s a song that shows that the band can mix other elements of punk masterfully together. The video for the song, by the way, is very well done and shows some love for the golden state.
“High Five” is another one of these songs that proves the songwriting skills of the band. This sort of call and response of the song contributes to its catchy-ness. It seems like the perfect song to sing and headbang along to while sitting in the Target parking lot, or really anywhere else. “Mexican Summer,” one of the previously released tracks, takes it down a notch, with more relaxed beats, but make no mistake, the track still hits right where it should. The whole track seems like it would make a great song to cover under Mariachi El Bronx. The only thing that might be confusing is the French line “ce la vie” in a song titled “Mexican Summer,” but hey, that’s life.
“Breaking News” is the other explicit song, and if a song should be explicit, then it’s this one. The guitar riff is a masterpiece, fast and just melodic enough. The drums sound like they personally offended the drummer, and now they feel the consequences of being struck hard. “Breaking News” is definitely one of the highlights of another great record by the band.
Everyone who recently went to college or really any other educational institution might hear this one before, “Jack of all trades, master of none.” It’s exhausting, but that’s the 21st century for you. The band’s song “Jack of All Trades” channels this energy, and maybe now this saying will be stuck in your ear for the rest of the day. Thanks, The Bronx. For everyone who watched Bo Burnham’s fantastic new Netflix special Inside, this song might be on the same level as “Unpaid Intern.”
Bronx VI is a great showcase of how The Bronx can still hit the right spots in people’s ear channels. The guitar solos especially make this album stand out from some of the other punk albums this year. The band didn’t necessarily reinvent themselves, but why fix something that isn’t broken?