I remember the first time I heard Wild Child — they were another of my Spotify Discover Weekly playlist discoveries with the song “Fools” — the title track from their 2015 record. Thursday night I got to see them play live at the Teragram Ballroom and found out I wasn’t the only one enamored by the indie pop and folk group.
Incredibly, this is the second band this WEEK I saw at the Teragram that worked with founding Death Cab for Cutie member Chris Walla (Lo Moon on Tuesday being the other).
They kicked their set off with that track, which showcases the full strength of the six-piece. It has the catchy pop songwriting of Maggie Rogers. Lead vocalist Kelsey Wilson reminds me of Colbie Caillat (remember her?) but also flexes her chops as a violinist.
Co-lead vocalist Alexander Beggins gives the band their folkier tinge with his baritone ukelele and cellist Sadie Wolfe adds depth to that dynamic as well. Matt Bradshaw proved to be the band’s secret weapon, playing both keyboards and trumpet, with Tom Myers providing the drums.
It was an ardent crowd that showed up in support — in fact there was a sign held up throughout the show by one boisterous attendee. Two songs into the set, a girl from near the sign yelled “I’m fucking crying!” during a lull between songs.
The track “Silly Things” sees Wilson and Beggins both providing vocals in an almost cheerier-sounding Damien Rice song. On “Eggshells”, the beefy violin line that Wilson delivered filled the room.
Prior to “Break You Down”, Wilson was joined on stage by friend and fellow singer Dorota Szuta. Wilson had been having issues with her voice and the band had to cancel an earlier show on the tour, mentioning how Szuta had helped out in a pinch.
The band played a large portion of their album Expectations that dropped in February, a strong listen from front to back. About half the set came from the record, including the title track that came at the end of the set.
The Austin six-piece proved that indeed “everything is bigger in Texas”, including their soundscapes and heartbreaking songwriting.
Photos by Stephanie Varela Rheingold