Rock Picks

The best rock picks, November 22

dmenconi@newsobserver.comNovember 21, 2013 

The Letter Jackets.

COURTESY OF D.L. ANDERSON

  • Other highlights

    • Also on the local-band album-release tip, Gross Ghost shows off its excellent new effort “Public Housing” (Odessa Records) at Cat’s Cradle’s Back Room Friday. That same night, Carbon Leaf will be onstage at the Cradle’s main room, Pivot plays Raleigh’s Lincoln Theatre and venerable Brazilian psychedelic rockers Os Mutantes hold forth at Raleigh’s Pour House. Mipso, a local ensemble that recently cracked the top 10 of Billboard’s bluegrass album chart, plays with David Holt Saturday at Raleigh’s Little Theatre – the same night rising Americana star Sarah Jarosz plays Haw River Ballroom in Saxapahaw.

How much talent can a single band hold? If you’re talking about local bluegrass quartet Chatham County Line, the amount is apparently limitless. The latest spinoff to emerge is Letter Jackets, featuring CCL’s John Teer and Chandler Holt, with an eponymously titled album that is just killer, a synthesis of sharp bar-band roots-rock and old-school classic rock that brings the late great Buddy Holly’s keening tones to mind. The band plays Friday at Durham’s Motorco Music Hall ($12, motorcomusic.com) and Saturday at Kings in Raleigh ($10, kingsbarcade.com). Josh Moore opens both nights.

Or start your weekend off with a 5-7 p.m. Friday reception at UNC-Chapel Hill’s Hill Hall, where 19 portraits of North Carolina musicians will go on display. Painted by Birds of Avalon drummer Scott Nurkin, these portraits of Doc Watson, George Clinton and other native Tar Heel acts adorned the wall of Pepper’s Pizza until it closed back in March. Now they’re on permanent display at UNC’s music school. Friday’s event will feature refreshments and a deejay spinning records – and it’s free.

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