Hailing from Colorado, and sounding very much like Sublime, minus the distorted guitars – right down to the quirky pop-inflected reggae jams and an uncanny vocal similarity between Bradley Nowell and lead singer Michael Hartman, aka Professor Lynx – Lion Vibes employs a firm grasp on roots reggae and mixes it up with a little bit of funk for an enjoyable, if lightweight, album.


 

 

My only gripe with Sublime is that I thought they would have made a really good straight-up reggae band.

But lead singer Bradley Nowell was smart enough to realize that you can’t really have a roots-reggae band fronted by a white guy. So they added a dash of punk and metal and made a few excellent records.

Hailing from Colorado, and sounding very much like Sublime, minus the distorted guitars – right down to the quirky pop-inflected reggae jams and an uncanny vocal similarity between Nowell and lead singer Michael Hartman, aka Professor Lynx – Lion Vibes employs a firm grasp on roots reggae and mixes it up with a little bit of funk for an enjoyable, if lightweight, album.

Without an actual Jamaican to be found, Sublime worked off of Nowell’s profane musings on Long Beach life; "Fullstride" simply goes light on the typical political subject matter and leans heavily on lead singer Professor Lynx’s love for Jah and social uplifting.

Dub fans will delight at the echo-heavy versions of “Another Go” and “True and Prevalent” that help to close out the album, but while the band has roots-rock nailed down to the letter – and as much as I hate to label – it is indeed tough for a white guy to front a reggae band and keep everything sounding authentic.

"Fullstride" is about as close as it gets, though, all respect due to Sublime.

Sussex Countian