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Sublime: Gold

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Album Review

Gold is the third official Sublime retrospective, following 2002's 20th Century Masters and Greatest Hits from 1999. But none of it is unreleased, or even very rare. In fact, Gold is really an abstract, an only slightly condensed run through Sublime's three studio albums. It includes hits, fan favorites, and a bunch of album tracks, as well as an essay that details again the band's rise and tragic fall for anyone who missed it first 3,000 times. But that's who Gold must be meant for, that potential Sublime neophyte, because sliced any other way this set is straight-up opportunism. Diehards will have all of this material a few times over, while casual fans are happy with the self-titled 1996 album. They have their "What I Got," their "Santeria," their "Wrong Way"; they don't need "Let's Go Get Stoned," "Had a Dat," or Bradley Nowell's earnest meanders into dub. So in that sense Gold isn't for anybody, because it includes too much shake for the noncommittal but not enough kind for the Sublime professionals. It's always nice to hear Sublime's best moments, to imagine them partying and playing through the backyards and beach towns of Southern California. But those memories get a little staler every time they're repackaged.


Formed: 1988 in Long Beach, CA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s

Formed in 1988 as a garage punk band, Sublime rose to fame in the mid-'90s on the back of the California punk explosion engendered by Green Day and the Offspring, though Sublime boosted their punk influences with heavy elements of reggae and ska. The band released only two albums during its first seven years, and finally found mainstream success with a self-titled release in 1996. It proved to be Sublime's last proper album, however, as lead singer Brad Nowell died in May 1996, just two months before...
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Sublime: Gold, Sublime
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