Nada Surf (Brooklyn, NY)
Nada Surf don't surf, although guitarist/vocalist Matthew Caws does occasionally manage to summon up the soaring, easy-living vocal stylings of Brian Wilson in his songs--which are by and large tight, shiny little pop nuggets, best digested and most easily recalled as the sort of familiar-yet-forgettable soundtrack music found on commercials and TV shows like "The OC" (where Nada Surf's music did, in fact, appear). Originally championed and initially produced by Ric Ocasek in the mid-'90s, some of their mentor's magic rubbed off in the form of compact-yet-roomy three-minute drills that would have fit just fine in the trunk of Ocasek's Cars. The band is currently recording its fourth album for release later this year. --Tjames Madison
Performing Saturday, March 19 at 1 a.m. at Red Eyed Fly (715 Red River St.).