Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Laika and the Cosmonauts - C'Mon Do The Laikadotdotdot
artworkThis is the first album from Finland's best known export. It's pretty Eurocetric stylistically, but does contain a couple nice surf tracks. These boys surprised everyone when they became the darlings of the American tour set.
Picks: C'mon Do The Laika, Out Of Limits, Rampage, Beat Girl, Lonely Bull, Fugitive, James Bond Theme, 1'45, Beat '88, Penetration, Salt Mine Twist, Misirlou, Fear, Zero Gravity, Baja, Moondawg

Track by Track Review


C'mon Do The Laika dotdot
Euro (Instrumental)

Progression based Euro instro instro. It's a fun though slightly weird track, with almost muddy sound and keys and guitars. Not their best track, but typically early Laika and the Cosmonauts.

Out Of Limits dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is a decent cover, moderately interesting due to the Euro treatment, and the near grin on the faces of the band. The keys are just so cheesy.

Rampage dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is spirited performance of the Challengers' track. It is quite fun, and very energetic. The drums are quite hot, and the twisted whammy that Glenn Gray used in the original are here. Wonderful.

Beat Girl dotdotdot
Euro (Instrumental)

John Barry's theme from the film of the same name. This is more rockin' than the original, and equally filmy. It spits pop corn at the drive in and the beat generation. Very nice.

Lonely Bull dotdotdot
Euro (Instrumental)

An average translation of the Herb Alpert / Tijuana Brass mega-hit, not as interesting as the Dream Syndicate's or the Swamis' versions, but pretty reverent and very listenable. The mariachi horns are missing, and not replaced with anything as strong as a dreamy guitar, though it pleases the senses anyway.

Fugitive dotdotdot
Euro (Instrumental)

The Fugitives' did this, and the Ventures offered it up later. This is very progression based, but it works, and the ringing space guitar in the break is really good. Fun track.

James Bond Theme dotdotdot
Euro (Instrumental)

Plucky MOR with John Barry big guitar. The cocktails are flowing, and the British teens are eagerly eavesdropping on private spy conversations. The organ is a bit hard to take, but otherwise it's a decent though unremarkable cover.

1'45 dotdotdotdot
Euro (Instrumental)

Fast, sporty, foxy, and quite tame compared to their live renditions. That's not a bad thing, because this song is written well enough to handle different approaches with ease. It's melodic, quirky, and fun. Round smooth tones.

Beat '88 dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

This is the Richie Podolor tune that the Surfaris did. This is a faster version, more spunky and less prone to the drama of the intended hesitation. The fiery pace is augmented with flying drums. Mighty hot.

Penetration dotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A standard cover of the Ventures version of the Pyramids' hit. Nothing special, and the organ is too cheesy for me, especially when coupled with those awful string slides that the Ventures added.

Salt Mine Twist dotdotdotdot
Euro (Instrumental)

This is a really nice original. It has a mysterious intrigue about it. The energy is solid, and the melody is simple and catchy. It's both bouncy lite and ominous dark. Very cool track.

Misirlou dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A very surfy and wet delivery, with a definite Euro bent, and a totally unique arrangement. A fine track, with lot's of shimmer to suck you in.

Fear dotdotdotdot
Euro (Instrumental)

The Ventures' version of this is more thin and terror laden , while this is more haunted, and sports almost vibraphone guitar tones. Really a nice cover.

Zero Gravity dotdotdot
Euro (Instrumental)

A hokey drum beat, a cooler than though progression, and a growling organ combine for a nifty sound, but an unmemorable tune. It's nice, but doesn't stick.

Baja dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

Shimmering vibrato, grumbling bass, and a haunted guitar sound offer a different variation on the Lee Hazelwood monster made a hit by the Astronauts. This is a nice version, sporting a gentler sound and feel. Quite effective

Moondawg dotdotdot
Euro (Instrumental)

Even faster than the Gamblers' original, but a lot less intense. This is a hard song to screw up, and they don't. This is quite listenable.