Subliminal Trip Album Release Party: Review

How’d the Show Go?
Article By: sandieganliz  Photos By: Courtney Pakalolo

March 5th marked the Subliminal Trip Album Release Party, which also launched the new record label – NUG Records. As the sista’-partner of NUG Magazine, NUG Records is an indie label looking to sign upcoming local musicians. Their first signed artists are a progressive rock band called Subliminal Trip, hence the green carpet event.

Doors opened at 8pm at Soundwave in Mission Beach. Upon entry, Subliminal Trip had a booth where you could purchase the brand new, full-length album “Be Set Free”. Next, there was the green carpet where one can have his or her picture taken by a NUG photographer. Following the green carpet, there was the NUG Radio booth, and then the Dime Bag booth, which was hosted by NUG Magazine contributor Tiffany Janay. NUG friends and family were there in full force, as well as Subliminal Trip sponsors Cabo Wabo Tequila, 4130, and The Kind Cookery.

Reason to Rebel started the night around 9:30p.m. with some hardcore, rage-type rock. They weren’t hard to miss because they were loud and sang proud. Their music definitely has political messages and, that night, the band raged! The music sounded like grunge/rock with fast beating drums and an electric guitar that gave a garage-type feel. Vocals suited the music well with a rock n’ roll vibe that screamed the name Reason to Rebel.

Next up was Mean Dinosaur. This band was mellower, representing a reggae style mixed with progressive rock. The leading guitar definitely had reggae riffs while also going into a melodic, bluesy sound. The drums kept a steady beat and the bass guitar was mellow. The vocals, like the first band, rocked out and gave the music an overall edge.

When Subliminal Trip was up to perform, the lights dimmed and their first music video hit the screen wall that was located right above the stage. The Soundwave crowd watched as Subliminal Trip debuted their song “Be Set Free”. – The video starts out with the band approaching a storage unit filled with a bunch of people ready to rock out; and they do, once the band starts playing their song. The song is about being tipsy and the police getting ya’, but f’ that, you’re gonna “Be Set Free”. And, as the band reveals how you’re going to be set free, they skank out their music.

All the bands are based out of San Diego, just how NUG Records prefers it. Thus, Subliminal Trip’s music is obviously influenced by our beach culture. They have this surf meets ska meets progressive rock sound. The vocals seem designed to take one on a trip, a mind-trip…a subliminal one. It’s impressive how Jason Becker sings because he turns his voice into an instrument with the vocals being melodic throughout each song. If you enjoy progressive/rock music, check them out; after all, they just released their first full-length album!

Now, a little history about NUG Records first signed band – Subliminal Trip. The band was formed in 2008, and according to their bio on, the band started out with just two members playing acoustic guitar, but happened to develop a nice following. So, they grabbed two more members and pushed their band further. With help from Dustin Becker, Subliminal Trip’s manager and brother to vocalist Jason Becker, the band has achieved such accomplishments like winning KROQ’s “Your Shot to Rock” contest, which was sponsored by Cabo Wabo Tequila. They have played at the Sunset Strip Musical Festival in Los Angeles alongside the Smashing Pumpkins.  And, according to the Hollywood Music in Media website, they received an award for “Best Reggae”.

NUG Records was also celebrating their launch, which took place in February. According to NUG Magazine publisher Ben G. Rowin, he and Dustin Becker decided to partner up and start a record label after covering many local bands that were having trouble finding one. NUG Records helped Subliminal Trip get their CD out, did a grip of promotion, and helped create the successful album release party. According to the guys, the final crowd count was well over 600 people.

Musicians and supporters alike are encouraged to check out the NUG Records website, which recently launched on March 3rd. Local bands interested in getting signed can contact NUG Records at Others interested in more information about the brand spanking new label can email And, to those who continue to show love to the NUG family, thank you for your continued support! You can find more great stuff at and Until then, get lifted!

bringing you that fire! stay tune for more posts.

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