Anny Celsi is one of this city's smartest and catchiest pop songwriters but, as is the case with so many talented musicians, she's far more popular in Europe than in her hometown. She might even be too clever for her own good, adapting the lyrics of such early songs as "'Twas Her Hunger Brought Me Down" from a Theodore Dreiser novel and combining them with jangling power-pop melodies. On her latest album, January
, Celsi revels in the simple pleasures of new friends and British record stores ("Travelogue"), hidden natural wonders ("Citybird") and the hope of romance ("Kaleidoscope Heart"). Love isn't always easy to find with "Ghosts in the Room," but she imbues sad, spare ballads like "Oh Baby, Is the Circus Back in Town?" with contemplative lyrics and intimately affecting vocals.
Fri., March 7, 9:30 p.m., 2014