Singer-songwriter Malcolm Holcombe is a stalwart of the local music scene (he was born and raised here), and his albums are not only brilliant constructions of gritty soul and Appalachian roots, they impart Holcombe's one-of-a-kind mountain wisdom. His new record, Down the River, is his ninth, and is "born from that bed of contradictions we all lie in,” according to press. And there's this: "He stomps, growls, rolls his eyes as he plays, then between songs cuts the tension with a corny joke." Holcombe plays at The Grey Eagle on Friday, Aug. 24. Ed Snodderly opens. 9 p.m. $10 in advance or $12 day of show. http://www.thegreyeagle.com.