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Big-T & the Bada-Bings


Laika and the Cosmonauts
Laika Sex Machine

I love surf music—that bouncy beat, that youthful energy, the pounding of the tom-tom, the thin twang of the tremolo on the guitar. That said, I've never felt the urge to have more than a few surf-based albums in my collection, which is my excuse for never having heard Laika and the Cosmonauts. Sure, I'd heard their name a million times. But, little did I know what I was missing.


Hear Samples of
Laika Sex Machine

Look, No Head
The Avengers
Come On, Do The Laika
Global Village

(Requires Windows Media)

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Laika Sex Machine (Yep Roc) was recorded live over ten dates, and demonstrates that surf-based music can be deeper, more lush, and more musically challenging than the stereotype would indicate. Truthfully, I'd guess there are surf purists (if such a beast exists) who would suggest that being deeper, more lush, and more musically challenging removes your name from the surf roster. But, I'd also guess that doesn't bother the Cosmonauts much.

Still present in their sound are the tremolo, wailing organ, and surf beat of so many groups. But, the band has a knack for using that foundation as a starting point for exploration rather than a destination. The result is "sophisticated surf" without a single drop of energy lost. My eyes have been opened. Perhaps my collection needs to grow a little in this direction.

-Gary Miller

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