Nada Surf's fifth album, Lucky, is out next week. Its lustre reflects the band's experience and comfort level, with lush arrangements and dense layers adding dimensions for deeper listening. Lucky for us, the new ingredients - cellos, horns, etcetera - add to the songs, rather than cover up for something missing. Remove the frills, including the guest vocals by Ben Gibbard, from the opening song, See These Bones, and it still reaches euphoric heights despite the charged lyrics: try as they might, no one's immune to/misfiring and acting on the wrong clues/always thinking it's time to redo and redo. Don't take my word for it - the band played an acoustic set for KEXP on Wednesday, and the songs, stripped down, have all the force of the originals.
Nada Surf - Live on KEXP, 1-30-2008 (mp3s):
Ice On The Wing
See These Bones
I Like What You Say
See These Bones (album version) (mp3)