Fred Eaglesmith

Fred Eaglesmith is like a more polished or normal (if one can refer to Eaglesmith as either) version of Tom Waits. Over the course of his three decades in the music business, Eaglesmith has perfected the kind of dry, wry, often dark type of classically informed Americana that carved out Waits' particular niche of cool, while preferring to hew a little closer to his roots. Offering a view of country and folk music that is uniquely his, Eaglesmith is capable of embodying the traditional spirit of those musics while adding just enough torsion for listeners to know he's onto something a little bit different. His last album, 2008's Tinderbox, showcased these puckish proclivities well, wringing tales of misery and fallacy through a funhouse mirror's worth of skewed sonic touchstones, even while comporting itself like a decidedly unjubilant gospel album. Anyone who can do that convincingly is worth a second look. With the Starlings. NICHOLAS HALL

Wed., Feb. 24, 7 p.m., 2010

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