Nada Surf

Updated 12/13/2012

Thursday: Indie-rock one-hit wonders hope "Popular" plays well at the Varsity.

Nada Surf


8:30 p.m. • Fine Line • 18-plus • $16-$18

While most artists of post-grunge one-hit-wonderdom faded after their 15 minutes, this New York trio has maintained a respectable career more than 15 years after its MTV- and rock-radio-lifted "Popular" broke in 1996. But today the veteran alt-rockers are more likely to be irked by a Genius Bar logjam than high school superficialities. Nada Surf's seventh album, this year's "The Stars Are Indifferent to Astronomy," freshens up melancholic chords and nostalgic lyrics with the wisdom that comes from being, you know, old. Anthemic single "When I Was Young" is guitar-pop gold for any generation. With Eternal Summers. MICHAEL RIETMULDER


8 p.m. • Famous Dave's Uptown • free

Blues guitar phenom Joanne Shaw Taylor, 27, has been turning heads since her teen years in Birmingham, England, where she was discovered by Eurythmics founder Dave Stewart. Three albums later, she's a sizable U.K. blues star who performed to a mammoth crowd as part of Annie Lennox's band at the queen's Diamond Jubilee Concert. But we Yanks can still catch her in a cozy club, playing an off-night, no-cover gig. Shaw Taylor favors the power trio format, likes Stevie Ray Vaughan quite a bit, has debatable vocal skills and can get carried away with fretboard pyrotechnics. Yet there's no denying her quicksilver chops and flag-waving, bone-rattling, incendiary solos.TOM SUROWICZ


9 p.m. • Myth • sold out

Like Luke Bryan, Owen is a rising country star with two first names. Last year, he landed at the top of the country charts twice, with "Barefoot Blue Jean Night" and "Alone With You." The momentum has continued this year with the hit "The One That Got Away" and an opening slot on the Kenny Chesney/Tim McGraw stadium tour. Opening are two promising male duos -- Love and Theft and Florida Georgia Line. JON BREAM