By the time came to record their major label debut, Nowell had been struggling with a heroin addiction. Sublime was recorded over a period of three months in Austin, Texas, in sessions characterized by heavy drug use and raucous partying. The album's musical style contains elements of punk rock, reggae, and ska, as well as dancehall, hip hop, and dub music, with tempos ranging wildly. Nowell's lyrical subject matter relates to relationships, prostitution, riots, and addiction.
The album debuted at number five on the US Billboard 200 chart, selling 57,000 copies in its first week. Upon its release, Distant Relatives received positive reviews from most music critics.
The first single, "I Don't Want To live on Mars", was released on iTunes on April 15, 2014 the same day as the album.
Aol.com released the video for "I Don't Want To Live On Mars" exclusively on their web-page. The music video features his real-life wife and kids in a dream sequence where their family traverses an unhealthy planet Earth. The song and video's imagery convey a unified message from Marley that we should treat the earth well so we do not all have to leave to live on mars.
Fly Rasta won the 'Best Reggae Album' Grammy in February 2015.
Survival is an album with an outwardly militant theme. Some speculate that this was due in part to criticism Marley received for the laid-back, ganja-soaked atmosphere of his previous release, "Kaya", which seemed to sidetrack the urgency of his message. In the song "Africa Unite", Marley proclaims Pan-African solidarity. The song "Zimbabwe" is a hymn dedicated to later-independent Rhodesia. The song was performed at Zimbabwe's Independence Celebration in 1980, just after the official declaration of Zimbabwe's independence. "Zimbabwe" is seen as an unofficial national song.
Survival was originally to be called Black Survival to underscore the urgency of African unity, but the name was shortened to prevent misinterpretations of the album's theme. Marley originally planned to release Survival as the first part of a trilogy, followed by Uprising in 1980 and Confrontation in 1983.
In South Africa the album was partly censored by the then white apartheid government.
Bob Marley & the Wailers became the most recognizable proponents of Jamaican music, while rebel anthems included here such as "Get Up Stand Up," "War" and "Exodus" enshrined Marley as a human rights icon to millions. The soundtrack offers extraordinary rare tracks as well as the familiar building blocks of Bob's career: from the sweet ska of "Simmer Down" and "Judge Not," through Trenchtown anthems like "Concrete Jungle" and "Natty Dread," and unreleased live recordings such as "No Woman No Cry (Live at The Lyceum)" or the historic "Jammin' (Live at One Love Peace Concert)." Special versions such as "Crazy Baldhead (Groucho Mix)" and "Exodus (Kindred Spirit Dub Mix)" reveal new angles to these classics. But it's feel-good greats like "Roots, Rock, Reggae" that testify to Marley's enduring legacy. He urges us to "dance 'cause we are free," and this soundtrack provides the ideal foundation to do just that.