Mike Kinsella, under the Owen moniker, has released a handful of records, some quite impressive, some shrug-inducing, all possessing their share of cringe-worthy moments as Kinsella offers his whispery emo one-liners. “No Good for No One Now,” from 2002, still stands as Owen’s best, and even 2006’s “At Home with Owen” had its moments of grace and invention. Kinsella’s new record, the bluntly titled “New Leaves,” doesn’t feature the songwriter taking any great strides in musical direction but, as with his previous releases, his phenomenal guitar-playing keeps the record afloat, the intricate and precise guitar pieces blending together seamlessly and beautifully. “New Leaves” is a very, very pretty record, as Kinsella, like much of his work with Owen, bases the musical pieces in acoustic guitars and sweet, sweeping melodies. “These old bones don’t feel so old when I’m home with you,” Kinsella sings on “Never Been Born,” and his on-the-nose romantics come off more genuine than you might think. Tonight, Owen performs as a full band, and gets opening-act help from Bob Nanna (Braid, Hey Mercedes) for the early show and Davey Von Bohlen (The Promise Ring, Maritime) for the late show. It’s an old-school emo kid’s dream! (Tom Lynch)
September 18 at Beat Kitchen, 2100 W. Belmont, (773)281-4444, at 7:30pm & 10:30pm.