We gave it an A-
We know what you’re thinking: Nada Surf? Aren’t they the guys who had a hit single, like, seven years ago? Well, yes and no. While this is the same Brooklyn-based trio responsible for 1996’s quirky ”Popular,” Let Go (Barsuk) couldn’t sound any more different from that spoken-word fluke. Instead, it collects a dozen near-perfect pop songs, each one teeming with joyful desperation. ”Let Go” begins with the crisp acoustic drama ”Blizzard of ’77” — surely one of the starkest album openers ever — and runs through an equal amount of slow-speed beauties (such as the pensive gem ”Blonde on Blonde”) and highly charged rockers (the wiry ”Happy Kid”); all the while, singer-guitarist Matthew Caws wraps his vocals around flypaper-sticky hooks. It’s a comeback effort that grows more popular with each spin.