Alejandro Escovedo has reached the age where songwriters tend to ruminate heavily on their pasts or try to rock out like their younger selves. Commendably, Escovedo has chosen to do both, while managing to avoid the inherent pitfalls. He came close to dying (during a battle with hepatitis C), pondered his mortality on 2006’s lavishly dark The Boxing Mirror, fired up the guitars for 2008’s joyous Real Animal, and worked with Tony Visconti on 2010’s Street Songs Of Love, which both considers and celebrates matters of the heart. The latter was a little too polished for its own good, but Escovedo’s latest collaboration with Visconti, Big Station, is due out this June, so all is not lost. Station is still kind of shiny, but it’s gritty enough to satisfy.