Laika & the Cosmonauts

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Laika & the Cosmonauts
Origin Finland
Genres Surf rock
Instrumental rock
Years active 1987-2008
Labels Yep Roc Records (US)
Grandpop Records (Finland)
Mikko Lankinen (guitar)
Janne Haavisto (drums)
Matti Pitsinki (organ and guitar)
Tom Nyman (bass)

Laika & the Cosmonauts were a Finnish rock band. They had the same lineup from the time they formed in 1987 until they stopped recording in 2008. The band was named after Laika, a Soviet space dog that died on board Sputnik 2 in 1957.


Their sound is usually described as surf rock, but a Boston Globe review noted that the band's sound is "far beyond the limitations of any specific genre." [2] They relied heavily on the Finnish rautalanka (electric guitar) tradition. The band toured the United States and Europe several times and although relatively unknown in the United States, their music was admired by many musicians, including Mike Campbell and Benmont Tench (of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers), Mike Palm of Agent Orange, and Surf Rock legend Dick Dale. Al Jourgensen of Ministry called them "the best f**king band in the world."[3]

In addition to their touring, the band appeared several times on European television.

Farewell tour[edit]

In an email to the band's mailing list on April 23, 2008, Laika and the Cosmonauts announced they would be drawing their twenty-year career to a close with an American tour through the summer of 2008. The tour ended with shows at the Continental Club in Austin, Texas that fall. A compilation album, Cosmopolis, was released at the start of the tour.


  • C'mon Do the Laika 1988
  • Surfs You Right 1990
  • Instruments of Terror 1992
  • The Amazing Colossal Band 1995
  • Zero Gravity (US compilation) 1996
  • Absurdistan 1997
  • Laika Sex Machine (live) 2000
  • Local Warming 2004
  • Cosmopolis 2008 (Compilation)


  1. ^ Discogs - Laika & the Cosmonauts profile and discography Retrieved 5 July 2015
  2. ^ Tomlinson, Sarah (6 February 2004). "Laika and the Cosmonauts: Local Warming". Boston Globe. Globe Newspaper Company. Retrieved 5 July 2015. 
  3. ^ "Laika & The Cosmonauts". Yep Roc Records. Retrieved 5 July 2015. 

External links[edit]