Jon Langford, charismatic anti-star of sainted rockers the Mekons, illuminates and mystifies in equal parts on his powerful new album with Skull Orchard, Here Be Monsters. Illustrated with his own painted iconography, Here Be Monsters is sometimes directly political — as in “What Did You Do in the War?” and “Drone Operator,” which concerns the guy who brings faceless death from behind his computer screen — but is also by turns mystical and realist. Langford is a rock journeyman with no time for self-regarding pretensions. He sings about life’s epic imbalances, both social and spiritual, and he’s well aware that no one’s getting any younger. “Aim too high and live in obscurity,” he sings in “Weightless.” “Live too long and die in poverty.”

Fri., April 4, 8:30 p.m., 2014