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Lit was formed in 1989 for punk-rock and alternative rock.

The members all attended the same high school in Anaheim, and first started playing music together in 1989 as the heavy metal-orientated Razzle. Building up a strong local following they changed their name briefly to Stain before adopting a new moniker and a retro dress code that reflected their own personal preferences. The quartet made their recording debut in 1995 with the Five Smokin' Tracks From Lit EP, released on the independent Malicious Vinyl label. Their excellent debut album dynamically fused alternative rock and power pop styles to great effect, and was successful enough on the all important college charts to earn the band a contract with RCA Records. The more radio-friendly A Place In The Sun was propelled into the US charts on the back of the radio hit, "My Own Worst Enemy". The album also included "Down', a paean to the Popoff brothers" Cadillacs.