Titus Andronicus formed in Glen Rock, New Jersey in 2005. The band took its name from the Shakespeare play Titus Andronicus. Their song "Fear and Loathing in Mahwah, NJ" features a reading of a speech given by Aaron the Moor from the play.
The title of Titus Andronicus' first album The Airing of Grievances is a reference to the fictional holiday "Festivus," created for the influential '90s TV series Seinfeld.
The title of Titus Andronicus' second album The Monitor is a reference to the USS Monitor, the first ironclad warship commissioned by the United States navy. The record features numerous American Civil War references and the song "The Battle of Hampton Roads" is about the 1862 battle between the monitor and the USS Virginia.
In 2010, Patrick Stickles from Titus Andronicus appeared in Color Me Obsessed, a documentary about the seminal Minneapolis rock band The Replacements. Other artists who appeared in the film include members of The Hold Steady and The Decemberists.
Although the band is from New Jersey, the members of Titus Andronicus say the New Jersery turnpike is "tourist-y." They say it gives Jersey a band name because it cuts through all of the industrial parks and oil refineries that people normally want to avoid. The band says the Garden State Parkway is a better road as it leads to the beach at the Jersey shore.
Titus Andronicus frontman Patrick Stickles says he stalked Dinosaur Jr. singer J. Mascis for half and hour so that he could meet him. Stickles spotted Mascis backstage at the Pitchfork Festival in 2008 but Mascis was walking around talking on his phone for a long period of time. Stickles admits that he hid in trees and duck under cover until Mascis was done, then he was "all up in his face."