For the members of the band Sponge, who hit hard in 1994 with a certified gold record in their first album "Rotting Piñata," being able to play enduring music to a quality audience is key.
“The drums and the guitars are the same size anywhere we play,” said guitarist Andy Patalan before playing to the Lazy Dog that holds 136 people.
In fact, a smaller venue with an engaged audience is preferable to lead singer Vinnie Dombroski.
“We just love to play,” he said. “I would rather play a packed small venue than an empty large venue.”
The band continues to play the kind of music that allowed it to hit gold in the '90‘s. Dombroski has not felt the need to change the band’s style. There is a lack of guitar in most rock music, he explained.
“In general what people call rock music and rock stars is very different,” said Dombroski. “Guitar is generally absent and we are a guitar band.”
He does find inspiration in other bands as he creates new music, such as appeared on the band’s EP Destroy the Boy in 2010. Dombroski cited Skrillex and the power that Sonny John Moore has created even without a guitar. This style of music is American but now with a world influence, he said.
“This keyboard, pitch and moderation thing has taken over for guitar. He’s loud and can play to 50,000 people and that is key,” said Dombroski of Skrillex.
The vision for the performance Thursday night remained thoroughly rooted in the past, with the tour brings the focus back to their first album.
“We said lets do something different and play all these old songs that people request and we don’t play,” said Dombroski of the creation of the "Rotting Piñata" tour.
These old standards for the band differ every time they are performed, said Patalan.
“It’s just fun interpreting all the songs,” he said. “The interpretation changes from where you are at, who you are looking at, the beer, the drive you had, your lunch. Everything changes everything.”