Herman Dune Toronto ON, March 11 to 14

Dressed like an ancient bluesman (tie, hat and big beard will do that), Herman Düne singer David-Ivar Herman Düne began by aping "Paint it Black" before his opening selection grew into a Graceland-style romp. On the strength of just his electric guitar, he silenced the bulging crowd. The pace sped from there as the band bashed content against form for an enthralling push and pull. A deceptively menacing getaway song employed internal rhymes to soften an ominous yarn while epic closer, "Next Year in Zion" (a Siddhartha-evoking wander), saw crashing guitar and high hat intersect at the narrative volta. Full of eloquent balladry, it was a whimsically charming show.