“There’s living and there’s dying, what I’m doing here is something in between,” Alejandro Escovedo declares on his new song “Sunday Morning Feeling.” But based this latest album, “Burn Something Beautiful” (Fantasy Records), it sure does sound like Escovedo is closer to the former than the latter. In terms of swagger, projection and dream-embodiment, there’s no better rock star out there than Escovedo, who will turn 66 years old next month and sounds better than ever. “Burn Something Beautiful” opens with a blast of glam-rock guitar snarl and doesn’t let up throughout its 13 tracks, with assistance from an all-star cast featuring members of R.E.M., Decembrists, Fastbacks and Sleater-Kinney. Good as the album is, this punk-soul godfather is still best heard live.
He plays at 8 p.m. Friday at the Carrboro ArtsCenter, on a bill with Brett Harris. Tickets are $36. See artscenterlive.org for details.
- Friday also brings Fruit Bats to the Back Room of Carrboro’s Cat’s Cradle (with Skylar Gudasz as a superlative opening-act bonus), Elise Davis opening for Black Lillies at Raleigh’s Lincoln Theatre, Mandolin Orange to Durham’s Hayti Heritage Center and jazz pianist Gerald Clayton opening a two-night run of the Duke Performances “Piedmont Blues” at Reynolds Industries Theater.
- Mountain Goats will be busy across the Triangle, playing Friday and Saturday at Durham’s Pinhook before moving over to the Cradle Back Room to play Sunday and Monday.
- Bombadil plays the Cradle with Goodnight Texas on Saturday, the same night singer/songwriter John McCutcheon is at Durham’s Motorco Music Hall and standup comic Patton Oswalt offers choice words about the state of things at Raleigh’s Memorial Auditorium.
- Flosstradamus raps on Monday night at the Raleigh Ritz, which has Third Eye Blind headlining the 95XMAS show Tuesday.
- And Johnny Irion, who used to lead Queen Sarah Saturday around these parts a loooong time ago, returns for a solo show Thursday at Motorco.