It's the 1950s in America and the economy is booming. Leisure time is plentiful, and cocktail hour, that sacred time of martinis and cosmopolitans, needs a soundtrack -- something that won't rattle the ice cubes too much. Arrangers like Martin Denny, comedian Jackie Gleason, and exotica pioneer Les Baxter created music that toned down the bombast of Big Band and Swing, but still had enough complexity to challenge music lovers. This new sound had deep Latin roots; trumpeter and bandleader Herb Alpert, Bossa Nova master Sergio Mendes and bandleader Xavier Cugat used the sounds and rhythms of Latin America to breathe life into the admittedly "white-bread" music of Lounge. Baxter and vocalist Yma Sumac created "exotica," while hipster Juan Garcia Esquivel and pianist/keyboardist Dick Hyman made futuristic, space age music for a country on the cusp of space exploration. The light sounds of Lounge were squelched by the rise of rock, but the related styles have seen a recent resurgence in popularity. Revivalist Cocktail music provided the soundtrack for the dressed-to-kill in-crowd scene of the 1990s, flourishing in sophisticated cities like New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles. Cocktail is a throwback to the campy cultural moments of the '50s and '60s, borrowing heavily from the best-known Lounge and exotica records of that era. The sound mixes a heady dose of kitsch with drums, congas, analog synths, Latin rhythms, and sometimes soft, polished horns. Combustible Edison tackled Cocktail from a moderately farcical standpoint, throwing plenty of Eisenhower/Kennedy-era cheese into their material. The Moog Cookbook meanwhile, made no secret of their desire to parody pop music's royalty by exclusively recording hits like Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit" and Led Zeppelin's "Whole Lotta Love" on the mightily murky moog synthesizer. As long as the Cocktail genre exists, irony will always have a home.