Sponge: Love & Sandwiches and Imaginary Marriage ’94

I have an audio quote of Ville Vallo saying, “Music is my god. My best friend.” That quote resonated with me because what he said is my truth. Music has been my god and best friend since I can remember and there are artists and bands that make a distinct impact on your life through their creations that are life altering or life saving.

Sponge is that band for me.

Deep in my depression days, their album Rotting Piñata saved my life. Through the lyrics I felt seen and heard and their music kept me tethered to this earth.

For that tether, I created a fansite which would one day become their main website and when that happened, I was able to personally thank Vinne Dombroski for saving my life through his craft.

And boy, what craft he has.

Dombroski has fronted Sponge for 30+ years plus been in such bands as The Orbitsuns, Diamondbuck, The Lucid, The Sons of Perdition, Spys4Darwin, Loudhouse, Crud and those are just to name a few. He has been trailblazing the Detroit and Michigan music scene and impacting those in his wake since day one and that’s before impacting the global music scene.

So when Sponge announced on their Instagram they had released “new” tunes from the Rotting Piñata sessions I was beyond stoked.

“Love & Sandwiches” is perhaps new to most Sponge fan ears. As a collector of B-sides and rarities, I can say that I have never heard this track before and it definitely doesn’t sound like another song by the band. Where as their song “Mekron Bomb” became “New Pop Sunday”, “Love & Sandwiches” is new.

It opens with a soul crushing bass line and ya’ll know I’m hooked. The bass sticks to one’s soul like salty air. It’s my favourite part of the song. 

I simply cannot find anything wrong with this track. It’s everything I adore about Sponge and Rotting Piñata album.

While the track is not another track renamed, there’s something very familiar about the chorus to “Love & Sandwiches”. It has echoes of another Sponge song that I for the life of me cannot pinpoint without going back and listening to their entire catalog.

I could see “Love & Sandwiches” fitting in perfectly with the other tracks on Rotting Piñata.

Fans recognise the title of “Imaginary Marriage ‘94” from the album Wax Ecstatic where it was simply called “Imaginary Marriage”. This track has always been one of my favourite tracks by Sponge and the ‘94 version just as much as the Wax Ecstatic version.

The Rotting Piñata sessions version is a full on rock song. It is chock full of guitars, drum, and bass for days. Sponge has never been shy of letting the bass shine and this track along with “Love & Sandwiches” reminds of that.

While this version is a far cry from the Wax Ecstatic version and knowing Rotting Piñata like the back of my hand, I can see why it may have not made the final cut for the album. In my opinion, “Imaginary Marriage ‘94” is just too upbeat. But good god is it good. I can hear this version fitting in wonderfully on the New Pop Sunday album.

As a Sponge fan, I adore these two songs and am so happy to have them in my music world and I don’t even have to guess other fans are too.

Both tracks will satiate Sponge fans’ appetite for “new” music and without a doubt rekindle their love of Sponge.

Listen to “Love & Sandwiches” and “Imaginary Marriage ‘94”