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Laika

Too Pure

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When the British noise/hiphop minimalists of Moonshake went their separate ways, guitarist David Callahan kept the band’s name. Hence Laika, which consists of three erstwhile Moonshakers: vocalist/guitarist Margaret Fiedler, bassist Jon Frenett, and producer Guy Fixsen. The latter brings an appropriately dark and sensuous feel to Laika’s mesmerizing debut, Silver Apples of the Moon. While Callahan’s Moonshake now seems to embody that band’s bombastic side, Laika allows Fiedler’s whispery, paranoid vocals to set the tone. The group’s aesthetic is similar to that of acid jazz and techno: Close attention is paid to the texture and quality of individual sounds rather than to melody. But Laika isn’t all chill. On “If You Miss” and “Marimba Song,” for instance, the band adopts an almost Eastern sound, using tons of warm percussion in the form of marimba, vibes, and sampled animal noises.