In the best tradition of the punk-rock troubadour, Frank Turner doesn't come armed with much more than a guitar and his anger.
At 28, the hard-touring Englishman, who spent his early years in the hardcore band Million Dead, sounds every bit the wizened veteran on his past two albums, Love Ire & Song and last year's Poetry of the Deed, the latter his first disc for Epitaph.
His songs root around in the chasm between his working-class idealism and the realities of the world — he was in mid-twenties when he wrote “punk rock didn't live up to what I'd hoped that it could be.” But instead of being a recipe for bitterness, such disillusionment works as an emotional call to arms in his anthemic sing-alongs.
Turner's muscular convictions have served him well on the road, which is where you'll find his quartet most of the time. His set in April at Coachella sizzled with fervor, and he's followed that up with a summer full of tuneful communing at festivals throughout Europe and the U.S.
He hits the Troubadour tonight, supported by like-minded Arizona folk-punks Andrew Jackson Jihad.
Elsewhere: Jamaican reggae duo Israel Vibration plays the Roxy. … Singer-songwriters David Gray and Ray LaMontagne do a second night at the Greek Theatre. … And to mark the 40th aniversary of Soul Train, there's a conversation with Don Cornelius, Smokey Robinson and Jody Watley at the Grammy Museum.
Also: Apocalyptica and Dir En Grey at Club Nokia; the Gories at the Echo; Moses Campbell, Little Teeth and 60 Watt Kid at the Smell; Modern Time Machines, Hexham Heads, the Meeting Places and Seasons at Spaceland; Michael Nhat, Halloween Swim Team and Pizza! at Echo Curio; Ras G at Low End Theory at the Airliner; Daylong Valleys of the Nile (members of Lavender Diamond), the Faraway Places and Molino at the Silverlake Lounge; Dylan Moran at Largo; Rod Melancon at the Hotel Cafe; Steve Cook at the Viper Room; Brynn Marie at the Mint; and Scissor Sisters' free in-store (6 p.m.) at Amoeba.