Brody Dalle HMV Underground, Toronto ON, May 7

Brody Dalle HMV Underground, Toronto ON, May 7
Photo: Atsuko Kobasigawa

There are few artists less associated with acoustic guitars than Brody Dalle. She's best known for her raspy wail, which was backed by slicked-up gutter punk in Distillers; her just-released solo debut, Diploid Love, couples it with over the top pop-rock production. Perhaps that's why Dalle looked pensive as she took the stage for a three-song acoustic set and autograph signing in the basement of HMV. Dalle's guitar was run through a distorted amp, so the concept of "acoustic" was certainly relative, but her music still felt stripped to the bone.

Starting with Coral Fang's "Dismantle Me," which she called "an oldie, but a goody," she removed her black hoodie to reveal her tatted up arms before moving on to Diploid Love's "Dressed in Dreams." The small cluster of 50 or so fans hung on every word she sang and said. "Did anyone else go the EMA show last night?" Dalle asked, to which several audience members answered "Just you, Brody!" She finished with "Rat Race" then quickly retreated to the venue's back room for a quick break before meeting her adoring public. The speed of the event prevented any real momentum from building, but Dalle proved she's not only a capable front-woman, but also an artist comfortable on her own.

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