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click to enlarge Nada Surf
  • Nada Surf

"Goat's Eyes," Hot Lava (Bar None): They're baaack. One of Richmond's catchiest indie-rock acts returns from hiatus with a keyboard-driven fashion statement built on a relentless chorus about goat's eyes — or is it self-conscious youth? Who knows.

"Teenage Dreams," Nada Surf (Barsuk): It's only February, but this standout track from the veteran New York band's latest CD, "The Stars are Indifferent to Astronomy," is a strong contender for best pop song of the year.

"Brains," Lower Dens (Ribbon Music): A new full-length from Baltimore's finest isn't expected to drop until summer. This krautrock-inspired teaser, making the Internet rounds, promises much.

"Unfold," The Lost Satellites (LS): The closing track from this underrated Richmond group's impressive new CD, "This War Will End," is a stately anthem ready made for a stadium full of lit Bics.

click to enlarge Bill Callahan
  • Bill Callahan

"Riding for the Feeling," Bill Callahan (Drag City): Singer and songwriter Callahan's deadpan baritone delivery on this sparse and lovely apocalyptic waltz earns him post-punk Leonard Cohen comparisons.

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