Rolling Stone Australia


The Bronx's Matt Caughthran on Food Poisoning, Losing a Leg, Italian Knife Fights


The Bronx's Matt Caughthran on Food Poisoning, Losing a Leg, Italian Knife Fights

The Bronx frontman, Matt Caughthran, runs Rolling Stone Australia through his list of lasts, including stories of Charlie Sheen's love life, medicating serious injuries with plenty of booze and getting caught up in international soccer rivalries.

The last time I went to a Lakers game
Last season. My brother bought me tickets for my birthday, Lakers versus Celtics. We had really great seats and the Lakers got destroyed. [Laughs] But we had so much fun. I like talking shit. I like yelling at the players. I like starting awkward chants that make people uncomfortable. I'm a big fan of the experience!

The last thing I regretted eating
I've only had food poisoning once, and that was in the UK. I went to this sketchy kebab place, and I got this chicken kebab and it's like, fucking pink. I'm not wired to really inspect food. Obviously I look at it, but it didn't really process to me that it might be bad. But I ate it, and I was puking, it was horrible. We had to play a show and I was puking and playing and it was so gross. It was a big part of me starting to go vegetarian. It was not a cool experience.

The last time I hung out with Charlie Sheen
Coachella! That was amazing. He was a mess. A legitimate mess. And he had this crazy hot chick with him, but she looked like she was just along for the ride. I don't know what her deal was, no judgment, but she didn't look like she was in love with him. He got kicked out of Coachella for being a drunken nuisance. You figure at some point people have to just stay inside. But not him.

The last time I feared for my life
Probably about three years ago. We got held up at knife point in Italy. These [AC Milan] soccer fans thought we were Russian dudes, Zenit fans, and I guess there was some big beef between the two soccer teams. We were sitting waiting at a bus stop, and out of nowhere comes this squad of eight, nine dudes, they all had weapons – one's got a giant knife, the other one has a hammer, the other one's got a knife – and they're screaming at us in Italian. We don't understand shit. We were like, "Los Angeles! Los Angeles! California!" It was this super intense two-to-three-minute standoff, we're just screaming at each other. Finally they started talking back and forth to each other, and they just ran off. Obviously we would have fought with everything we had, but we were just kind of outmanned. We would have had some scars for sure.

The last time I injured myself onstage
We were in France with Against Me! about two months ago, we were in Le Havre. Three songs in I jump up in the air and I come down on my right leg and my calf just ripped. I was able to power through the [remaining] shows just hammering down booze, cos I was in pretty critical pain. I got home and the doctor was like, "It's really bad, you came down with so much force on the stage that you ripped your calf muscle from the bottom up." It's a 10-week recovery, and I'm five weeks in. It's starting to fuse back together which is rad, but now I got this thing on the right side of the leg, my leg's basically going numb. So I might have to legit chop my leg off. I hope not, but there's some fucked up shit happening in my leg and I've gotta go get another MRI. If I show up in Australia and I've got one leg you know why. [Laughs]

The last time someone sang my lyrics back at me
Last week when I was DJ'ing. I get super stoked on stuff like that. Lyrics mean a lot to me and the fact that they mean a lot to other people, that means the world to me. The funny thing is, and the thing that I hate, is people sing the wrong lyrics to me all the time. Like not even close, dude. Not even in the same ballpark of the right words! And I always wonder, what is going on in your head? And we print the lyrics in all our fucking records so there's no excuse! [Laughs] People just gotta dig in a little more, put in the work.

The last time I was starstruck
There's certain frontmen I get super nervous around. And one of them is Dave Quackenbush from the Vandals for some reason. I always thought he was the coolest frontman ever, and we've hung out like a million times. I can hang out with Dave Grohl and fuckin' all these monster musicians and famous people and be totally cool, and then Dave Quackenbush walks in the room [laughs] and I freeze! It's so funny how stuff like that works. They were such a big band for me growing up, it's super funny.


The Bronx's new album, 'V', is out now. They're touring Australia with Pennywise in October and November.

This article features in issue #791 (October, 2017), available now.


Topics: The Bronx


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