Sublime With Rome: Sirens

Reconstituted Nineties beach bros jam on into a new groove

Credit: Bryan Sheffield

Sublime's charismatic frontman, Brad Nowell, died just months before their 1996 major-label debut became a smash hit. The surviving members of the SoCal crew re-formed a few years back with new guy Rome Ramirez in Nowell's place, but bassist Eric Wilson is the only original member left on the group's latest LP, which stirs up the same hey-whatever mix of reggae, hip-hop and punk that made Sublime shirtless charmers 20 years ago. Ramirez sings about peace, love and his dick with a smooth versatility that matches the buoyant music. But without anything like Nowell's sarcastic slacker edge, Ramirez comes off as not much more than a good-natured party dude.