As leader of the band Varnaline, Raleigh transplant Anders Parker always tended to project a withering intensity – even the quiet songs seemed to glower. But his latest incarnation as half of the duo Anders & Kendall (with Kendall Meade from Sparklehorse, Mascott and many other bands) finds Parker in more of a low-key tone, with an album of pretty and subdued twang-pop that goes down as smooth as anything he’s ever done. The album is the deceptively titled “Wild Chorus” (Nine Mile Records), which Anders & Kendall will show off Saturday at Kings in Raleigh. Doors open at 9 p.m. and cover is $8. See kingsbarcade.com for details.
• Friday night brings metal supergroup Down (featuring another old Raleigh hand, Corrosion of Conformity alumnus Pepper Kennan) to Raleigh’s Lincoln Theatre, The Old Ceremony to Saxapahaw’s Haw River Ballroom and Kenny Roby to Motorco Music Hall in Durham; Dillinger Escape Plan plays Carrboro’s Cat’s Cradle Thursday; and James McCartney (yes, the son of Beatle Paul) plays Durham’s Casbah on Thursday.