2022 SU General Election Full Supplement

Photo courtesy of Chris MacArthur

NOBRO talks playing arenas, confidence and new music

By Troy Hasselman, January 22 2020

After previously touring with punk mainstays like FIDLAR and PUP, Montreal-based rockers NOBRO have continued their roll by landing an opening slot with The Distillers and Alexisonfire on a tour that is bringing the band through arena’s for the first time in their career. Despite some of the expected pre-show jitters, the band seems to be enjoying playing bigger venues.

“Oh my God, it was amazing,” says NOBRO vocalist and bassist Kathryn McCaughey, speaking to the Gauntlet during the bands’ long drive to Edmonton from Winnipeg, where they played their first arena show on Jan. 20. “It was pretty nerve wracking. The stages are big, the arena is big, the bands are big. It’s a little bit of a learning curve from what we’re used to. But everyone is super nice, the crew is super nice and made us feel really comfortable so it’s just a matter of getting past the weird excitement to embrace the moment.”

The band is touring with 2000s punk heroes The Distillers and Alexisonfire. While the band is still early on in the tour, they’ve been impressed by the courtesy that they’ve received from their tourmates.

“We’ve only had one show so far, but they’ve all been so nice,” McCaughey says. “It’s crazy how nice they are. For us, we’ve all been influenced by these bands throughout our lives so it’s a big deal for sure. But they’re also just really nice people.”

NOBRO is set to release their EP Sick Hustle in April on the legendary Indie label Dine Alone Records, the home of acts like tourmates Alexisonfire, but also At the Drive-In, City and Colour, Tokyo Police Club and Jimmy Eat World. The band is excited about the release and sees it as a huge step forward for the band.

“It’s a big thing,” McCaughey says. “It’s exciting. This is our first EP on a label. We worked really hard on developing a new path and we’ve added new members as well. It’s about showcasing the band in the best way possible and we really took our time writing and recording so we’re really proud and excited to get this out.”

NOBRO’s music is marked by a fast-paced, relentless self-confidence that recalls the bratty mall punk of the 2000s as much as the pomp of ‘70s glam rock. This confidence is necessary for the music to translate.

“I feel like with the music that we make you have to be really confident in what you say and deliver it confidently or else no one’s going to buy it, not even yourself,” McCaughey says. “If you don’t believe in yourself and stand up there and shred your heart out no one’s gonna follow you and jump off a cliff with you. Even at the beginning, it wasn’t as good as it is now but we still had that confidence at the beginning. It’s rock and roll, you have to be confident.”

Looking ahead, the band is excited about where things are heading and hopes to keep on making music and touring more in the year ahead.

“We’re just pretty excited right now with how things are shaping up,” McCaughey says. “Not really having any expectations, taking it day-by-day. We want to keep writing better music and make better shows and develop our sound more.”

NOBRO is set to open for The Distillers and Alexisonfire at Scotiabank Saddledome on Jan. 23. Tickets are still available for the concert and their music can be found on all streaming platforms.


Hiring | Staff | Advertising | Contact | PDF version | Archive | Volunteer | SU

The Gauntlet