If live shows reveal the mind of a performer, Julian Koster’s inner life takes place in a veritable magic kingdom. He’s on the road as Music Tapes with a show called “The Traveling Imaginary,” featuring an actual circus tent and some strange instrumentation crafted for the occasion. And of course, the Tapes’ dreamy weird music puts one in mind of Willy Wonka if he had a fascination with accordions and banjos rather than chocolate bars. Music Tapes plays three Triangle shows this week – two at Carrboro’s Cat’s Cradle ( catscradle.com) Monday, and one on Tuesday at Durham’s Duke Coffeehouse ( dukecoffeehouse.org). Tickets are $12 at the Cradle, $5 at Duke Coffeehouse (free with Duke ID).
- Other highlights: • Overmountain Men (featuring Avett Brothers bassist Bob Crawford) opens for Acoustic Syndicate Friday at the Cradle; Saturday brings Calexico evoking far-away wide-open spaces at the Cradle, and the feisty Jo Gore & the Alternative holding forth at the Carrboro ArtsCenter; the fantastic San Francisco psychedelic rocker Ty Segall plays Wednesday at Kings in Raleigh; also Wednesday, classy British singer/songwriter Lloyd Cole is at the ArtsCenter; Thursday, it’s Texas funnyman Robert Earl Keen at Raleigh’s Lincoln Theatre and a “Writers in the Round” show at the Cradle featuring Indigo Girl Amy and some leading local lights – Mount Moriah’s Heather McEntire, Megafaun’s Phil Cool and Hiss Golden Messenger’s M.C. Taylor.