NME REVIEW: Wild Child at Meow Wolf: A Sonic Eternal Return
Some places just fit the bill. Like a Grateful Dead concert at Red Rocks, Meow Wolf in Santa Fe provides the perfect backdrop for the Austin-based Indie-Pop band Wild Child. If they convert their songs into visual art, it blends in with the other mind-altering exhibits at the House of Eternal Return, the centerpiece exhibit at Meow Wolf.
Wild Child was formed back in 2010 by Kelsey Wilson (lead vocals and violin) and Alexander Beggins (lead vocals and baritone ukulele). Joining them is Sadie Wolfe (cello), Tyler Osmond (bass), Matt Bradshaw (keyboard and trumpet), Cody Ackors (guitar and trombone), and Tom Myers (drums). They embody the Texas Indie-Pop sound made famous in the 90s by musical acts like Spoon, Shearwater, and The Tontons. It harkens to the sonic spirit of Indie giants like The Black Keys. Wilson's vocals also emit a Reba McIntyre-ish twang which helps create the living room-type ambiance.
The show started with their first hit, Pillow Talk, which immediately put the crowd into a swoon while they swayed back and forth to this ukulele-led indie ballad. During this song and throughout the concert, Wilson and Beggins call back to each other in (The) Lumineers fashion.
They preserved the spaces in their music during their live performances. Myers kept a firm beat but didn't overwhelm the tranquil mood, and Osmond's baselines followed along obediently.
Moving into their mid catalog with songs such as Trillo and Alex, the band successfully maintains the intimate vibe they created at the top of their set. At the bottom of their concert set, Reno and, more notably, The End of the World speaks to the cacophony of social threats we all face but wade through bravely when accompanied by a loved one, which is eerily similar to the exhibits spilled across the floor of this indie artist created experiential gallery.
Much like a first-time visitor at Meow Wolf, first-time audience members were raving about the band, described as bewildering, nostalgic, and moving. Repeat audience members shared that the experience was intimate, with Wilson wading into the crowd and leading a sit and sign-in. Wilson and Beggins connect with the audience throughout the show, especially Follow Me, capturing folks and leading them into their close community of friend followers.
Mission accomplished! Consider this audience member taken over by their spell.
You can follow Wild Child through their social media at @wildchildsounds or visit https://wildchildsounds.com.
Alex Paramo is an Author and Co-founder of Community Publishing (http://communitypublishing.org). He is also the Owner and Events Organizer at Mariposa Music.