Wednesday afternoon the Slidebar Rock-N-Roll Kitchen in downtown Fullerton shared via its various social media, that Southern California-based reggae and punk band Sublime with Rome would be stopping by to play a free gig in the venue’s intimate concert space that evening.
The trio was preparing to head out on its largest North American tour to date, which kicks off Thursday in San Diego and comes to Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre on Friday, the same day its second album, “Sirens,” will be released.
A couple hundred lucky fans, who showed up at the bar early with grocery bags filled with school supplies to donate in exchange for a wristband for the show, were treated to Sublime’s fan-favorite hits like “Wrong Way,” “Date Rape,” “Bad Fish,” “What I Got” and “Santaria” during the hour-long set.
The band also tried out a few of the new songs off of “Sirens,” including the more mellow-vibe “Brazillia,” the sing-along radio single “Wherever You Go” and the hard-hitting punk rock track, “Best of Me.” Before all of the loud and sweaty madness, vocalist-guitarist Rome Ramirez, bassist Eric Wilson and drummer Josh Freese sat down for a chat in a yet-to-be-finished expanded portion of the Slidebar about how the new record came together and getting to celebrate its release with a hometown crowd.
Eric Wilson says, “I’m able play music for the love of music, just like I did back then.
I am so fortunate to still be able to do it,” he said.
“In a perfect world, we’d like to launch it on the first day of the tour, but doing it closer to home on the 17th, it just happened to work out that way.” The first taste of the album was the single “Wherever You Go,” which debuted on KROQ in May.
The band released their second album, ‘Sirens’ in July of 2015.
Co-produced by Rome and Paul Leary, who manned the boards for ‘Yours Truly,’ ‘Sirens’ is an expression of three musicians who truly get each other and who can communicate seamlessly through their instruments and while in their favorite habitat, the stage.
In 2011, they debuted their first album, ‘Yours Truly,’ which picks up where Sublime left off, exploring the reggae dancehall sound they were developing in 1996.
As music has changed, so has the sound of Sublime with Rome, adding in more rock, hip hop, Latin, jazz and psychedelic influences.