Sound — 9
This is the first studio album from Sublime's new lineup; a solid release with tracks appealing to original fans as well as those with Rome's flair of originality. Sublime is well known for its creative mish-mashing of reggae, ska, punk, rock, hip-hop and even blues. While Sublime With Rome stays true to this sound, "Yours Truly" seems to have diverted away from punk; while there are incredible ska punk tracks such as "Panic" and "My World", the only pure punk track is "Paper Cuts", which has a fantastic breakdown but lack's Brad Nowell's emotion and aggression, possibly leaving fans of his punk work a bit disappointed. The main body of this release is composed of reggae tracks; these are all fantastic. My favourite is You Better Listen, which starts with a dirty guitar riff and eventually reaching a chorus of very nice female vocal harmonies. I also adore "Lovers Rock", a solid reggae track with a well-placed brass section. "Yours Truly" also contains some acoustic rock tracks, such as "PCH" and "Spun", both great tracks which are so enjoyable to listen to. Rome has contributed his own style to Sublime With Rome, pleasing fans old and new.
Lyrics — 8
While the lyrics aren't the strongest point of this album, songs such as "Panic", which I perceive as dealing with the rush that is the human race and how easily relationships between people are broken down, are very well written. Most of the songs have a great lyrical flow, in particular "You Better Listen" which has a great vocal rhythm. At the very least, each song has a relevant set of lyrics. In comparison to Nowell, the differences are evident; while Brad discussed topics such as heroin abuse ("Pool Shark") and broken homes ("Wrong Way"), Rome's preferred topic seems to be relationships ("Lovers Rock", "My World", "PCH", "You Better Listen"). Not that Brad didn't cover that subject at all. Rome is a fantastic singer and although I feel that his voice is not at all suitable for punk, lacking a great deal of aggression, he is great at all of the other styles present on "Yours Truly".
Overall Impression — 9
When compared to Sublime's other albums, I feel that this latest release would be on par if there was an extra punk song with a high level of aggression or emotion. Nevertheless, it's a solid release, pumped with reggae-ska-acousticy goodness. I've listened to this album so many times since it was available for streaming on their Facebook page and I can't wait for my preordered album to jump the pond. My favourite songs are "Panic", "Lovers Rock", "My World", "PCH", "Take It Or Leave It", "You Better Listen" and "Spun". I don't like "Paper Cuts"; yes, I know I've whined about a lack of punk tracks but I feel that this track is unnecessary since it doesn't meet my punk requirements. If my copy-to-be is stolen, I'll buy it again; no doubt about that. Overall, an outstanding dbut release.