Sunset Rubdown Lee’s Palace, Toronto ON October 13

In between Wolf Parade jaunts and recording sessions, Spencer Krug — a time manager of fascist proportions — and his Sunset Rubdown cohorts slotted in a brief tour. Road-testing songs from an in-progress LP and throwing in old favourites, the five-piece deftly sewed together disparate threads. The result was raucously compelling, surprisingly cohesive, and really, really loud.

While fledgling selections boasted Sunset trademarks (i.e. dissimilar allusions made harmonious, lasagne-style instrumental layering and unhinged vocals), they also showed off an atypical ease of accessibility.

Beginning with a nocturne that would keep even narcoleptics awake, the band delivered an artillery-style barrage of percussion. Though tryptophan-addled, the taciturn crowd finally came to life for mid-set standout, the tentatively titled "You Go on Ahead.” Throughout, tribal drums flirted with Camilla Wynn Ingr’s coy keyboard as Krug’s marching rhythm guitar duelled with Jordan Robson-Cramer’s creepy high-pitched lead. The result was exhausting but stirring.

"You go on Ahead” and the still-evolving "Idiot Heart” employed a more straight-ahead rock paradigm than most Sunset compositions, yet they congruently slid into the set-list. "Idiot Heart” in particular provided a welcome salve for the near-constant orgy of explosions that preceded it.

Regardless of unexpected tangents (a glockenspiel here, a Wreckless Eric guitar riff there), Krug’s paradoxically volatile-but-deliberate voice centred the proceedings, holding musical flights of fancy together. Similarly, his band’s purposeful interactions provided meticulous checks and balances. "Shut Up I am Dreaming of Places Where Lovers Have Wings” toed a line between strident drumming and a subdued bass while gothic lullaby, "Stallion,” buoyed Krug’s opaque lyrics with a haunting keyboard.

Penultimate pre-encore track, "Dragon” (tentatively named by blogging conjecturers), began with measured handclaps and sweet piano taps before surrendering to dirge-ing guitars and sprawling drums. Throughout, Ingr’s sweet background vocals tempered Krug’s sky-scraping wail (think late period Xiu Xiu), easing the song’s stand-offish rhythmic salvos. In an evening of complex cohesion, it was an appositely placed epic.