After a brush with stardom via 1996's single "Popular" — dismissed by many critics as a novelty tune — Nada Surf left the major-label grind with 2003's Let Go on Seattle's Barsuk label. The Brooklyn-based band's brand new disc, The Weight is a Gift, continues the momentum with a certifiably grabby set of tunes that blend power-pop with an indie sensibility. You could call it commercial indie — in a similar vein as Death Cab for Cutie or The Shins. Matthew Caws' airy lead vocals are complemented by plush harmonies and gauzy instrumental tracks that bring just enough grit to avoid being stamped wimp-rock. Opener Sea Wolf, from L.A., brings a healthy dose of quirk to its indie-pop sound.
Nada Surf w/Sea Wolf, Fri., Oct. 26 (doors 8 p.m.), State Theatre, St. Petersburg. $15. —Eric Snider
A Dog's Life
Philly-based pop-rock band Dr. Dog bent our ear earlier this year with their new album, We All Belong, a throwback affair that splits the difference between Beach Boys polish and the more rustic sounds of The Band. The young men's collective charm and verve shines through on nearly every track, creating an ebullient sound that rarely lacks in smarts or sincerity. Dr. Dog performed at Crowbar in June, and the show was a well-attended success that cemented the band's rep among those turned on to their breakthrough album. This time around, Aestheticized Presents brings the band back to the Ybor City venue in conjunction with WMNF, which has for months been playing Dr. Dog's "My Old Ways" and other tracks from We All Belong fairly consistently.
Dr. Dog w/Delta Spirit/Emily Lacy/The Sugar Oaks, Wed., Oct. 31, 9 p.m., Crowbar, Ybor City, $10/$13 at the door. —Wade Tatangelo
Celebrate Good Times
They've been compared to Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, but Celebration is neither as punk derivative nor as inaccessible. Singer Katrina Ford brings ethereal white-girl soul to the Baltimore trio's soundscape of shimmering, texturally rich, sometimes hard-rockin' psychedelia. The fourth band founded by Ford and her multi-instrumentalist husband, Sean Antanaitis, Celebration has managed to impress both critics and peers since their 2005 self-titled debut, and they've toured with the likes of Blonde Redhead, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and TV on the Radio. Celebration comes to Tampa with Brooklyn's Dragons of Zynth, a quintet that produces experimental glam-rock that is both bizarre and appealing in a holy-shit-what-the-hell-is-going-on-here? sorta way.
Celebration w/Dragons of Zynth, Sun., Oct. 28, 9 p.m., New World Brewery, Ybor City; $8, 813-248-4969. —Leilani Polk