Sponge was one of the more underrated groups in the post-grunge boom of the mid-'90s. When they were on top of their game -- as evidenced by the hits "Plowed" and "Molly (Sixteen Candles)" -- the band's songs had a knack for jangly riffs and catchy, anthemic hard rock hooks, despite being wrapped in the fuzzy guitars and brooding seriousness that typified grunge music. Sponge grew out of a Detroit-based hard rock act called Loudhouse, which released an album on the Virgin label in 1988 before losing its record contract and disbanding shortly thereafter. Drummer-turned-vocalist Vinnie Dombrowski (born Mark Dombrowski) and guitarists Mike Cross and Joey Mazzola regrouped as Sponge in 1992, adding Mike's brother Tim Cross on bass and Jimmy Paluzzi on drums. Adapting their '70s hard rock influences to fit the grunge zeitgeist, the bandmates earned a major-label deal with Columbia and released their debut album, Rotting Pinata, in late 1994.