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Peter Case

Valentine’s, Friday

Buffalo native Peter Case came to notoriety for the power-pop of his California-based bands the Nerves (“Hanging on the Telephone”) and the Plimsouls (“A Million Miles Away”), but there’s something very hometown-true about his work ethic. To wit: He squeezed an emergency double-bypass surgery in between his 2007 Grammy-nominated album Let Us Now Praise Sleepy John and this year’s rough-edged blues gem Wig! Truly, he is through-and-through a rock & roller, even if his latter-day material has tended toward the acoustic-folk side of the musical spectrum. Case brings his great collection of guitars and songs, including the one from Valley Girl, to Albany this week. (Nov. 5, 9 PM, $15, 17 New Scotland Ave., Albany, 432-6572)

The Alternate Routes, the Kin

Jillian’s, Friday

Musicians can be superstitious folk. Take the Alternate Routes, for example. The group signed with Vanguard Records on Thanksgiving morning, 30 years to the day after The Last Waltz was filmed, a movie the group found influential around the time they formed at Fairfield University. What could it mean? Well, if you look closely at 36:17, Rick Danko appears to mouth the word “Brooklawn” to Levon Helm, which was the name of a house in which members of the Alternate Routes lived during the recording of the Watershed EP, so, clearly . . . they’re doing all right for themselves. Their fourth studio disc, Lately, comes out this fall. They’ll be supported by Aussie brothers the Kin. (Nov. 5, 9 PM, $13, 59 N. Pearl St., Albany, 432-1997)

Dimmu Borgir

Northern Lights, Saturday

Just as volcanoes influenced much of Scandinavian mythology, they have also inspired heavy metal. Norway’s symphonic black metal band Dimmu Borgir even borrow their moniker from an Icelandic lava-gusher. The similarities don’t end there: Just as a volcano itself changes form and shape over the course of many years, influencing the landscape around it with each eruption, Dimmu Borgir have gone through many transformations (guitarist Silenoz and vocalist Shagrath are the only constants of the band’s 17-year career) and influenced the black metal scene with each new release, including this year’s Abrahadabra. Get heavy when the band play Clifton Park on Saturday with Dawn of Ashes, plus fellow Norwegians Enslaved and Blood Red Throne. (Nov. 6, 7:30 PM, $20, 1208 Route 146, Clifton Park, 371-0012)

Elizabeth Cook

Elizabeth Cook

The Linda, Monday

It takes balls to call an album Balls. But that’s what Elizabeth Cook did with her fourth, Rodney Crowell- produced record, and she found her biggest commercial success to date as a result. It also takes balls to sing a decent song about a car, and “El Camino,” from her latest record, Welder, is a decent song about a car. The album, produced by Don Was and released in May, is named for her father, who learned to weld while serving time in a Georgia prison. And when Cook turns the car-song paradigm on its head by telling an unwanted suitor that his car is creepy—“and not in a gangster kind of way but in a perv kind of way”—it’s one of country’s finest moments this year. (Nov. 8, 8 PM, $17, 339 Central Ave., Albany, 465-5233)

Pink Martini

The Egg, Monday

There’s something deliciously louche about the lounge orchestra Pink Martini. Co-founder Charles Lauderdale famously said he wanted them to sound like the United Nations house band circa 1962. We think they’d be more appropriate as the dance orchestra for a James Bond supervillain: “Welcome to SPECTRE’s Strychnine Lounge, Dr. No!” Their breakthrough song, “Sympathetique,” celebrated laziness; the lizardly “Hey Eugene” found lovely, languid frontwoman China Forbes trying to jog the memory of an erstwhile one-night stand; their version of “Brazil” made us think of Carmen Miranda and Terry Gilliam. And if that doesn’t convince you Pink Martini are disreputably hip, consider this: They’re huge in France. (Nov. 8, 7:30 PM, $39.50-$75, Empire State Plaza, Albany, 473-1845)

Also Noted
Hot Club of Detroit

The Charles R. Wood Theater in Glens Falls hosts the CD release show for the John Lennon Song Project tonight (Thursday); the seven-piece band is led by Rex Fowler of Aztec Two-Step and Tom Dean of Devonsquare (8 PM, $22, 798-9663). . . . Hot Club of Detroit will close out the A Place For Jazz season at the Whisperdome in Schenectady tomorrow (Friday, 8 PM, $15, $7 students, 393-4011). . . . It’s a big week for big bills: Canadian deathcore band Ion Dissonance play Bogie’s Friday night as part of a Malus Clothing-sponsored tour that also features Arsonists Get All the Girls, Within the Ruins, And Hell Followed With, Structures, and Destruction of a Rose (7:30 PM, $12, 482-4393). . . . On the Proctors mainstage Saturday: an oldies show, starring Lou Christie, the Tokens, the Duprees, and the Drifters (7:30 PM, $34.75-$49.75, 346-6204). . . . Also Saturday is the fourth year of the Experience Hendrix Tour, appearing at the Palace Theatre; the 2010 edition features Living Colour, Steve Vai, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Susan Tedeschi, and about a dozen more guitar greats paying tribute to the late legend (7 PM, $39.50-$79.50, 465-3334). . . . Also Saturday, feminist folk pioneer Cris Williamson is at the Eighth Step at Proctors (7:30 PM, $24, 346-6204). . . . George Winston comes to the Charles R. Wood Theater on Sunday in support of Love Will Come, his second tribute album to Vince Guaraldi—and yes, it contains several songs from the Charlie Brown songbook (7:30 PM, $48, 798-9663). . . . Chicago-based jam band Cornmeal are at Red Square on Wednesday, joined by special guests Jatoba (8 PM, $10, 465-0444)

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