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Wild Child

The Runaround – 2013 (The Noise Company)

Reviewed by Jason MacNeil

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CDs by Wild Child

Wild Child, a promising Austin band has delivered a finely crafted batch of sweet, roots-y pop. Fronted by Kelsey Wilson and Alexander Beggins, it's that dynamic which makes this 11-track offering bring to mind some semblance of an earthy She & Him and particularly Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings.

A perfect example of this synergy in the septet is the waltz-like "Victim To Charm," a give and take Wilson and Beggins shine on as it saunters along with a bit of gravitas towards the homestretch. Meanwhile Wild Child sound sinfully tame and catchy on "Crazy Bird" with its toe-tapping, humming-induced melody.

Throughout, Wild Child have created a batch of songs that sound very homey and close, each sounding as if you're on the couch listening to them play mere inches away. "Stitches" exemplifies this as it changes gears subtly, but never feeling forced. Think of a very highbrow version of The Lumineers, and you might understand where Wild Child is coming from on this hokey-free album.

Perhaps the highlight is "This Place," which features Wilson alone with her thoughts and Beggins accenting the opening. A very gentle number evolves into both vocalists singing different parts simultaneously before uniting for portions. But things pick up again with the almost ragtime-tinged "Living Tree," which has been getting plenty of attention and for good reason! Aside from "Rillo Talk," which perhaps should have been a reprise or hidden track, this record works from start to finish. The same can be said for the band!