New Finds: Wild Child (Free Download) written by Cassandra Quinn
Coed musical duos are a dime a dozen these days. From the dearly departed guitar riffs of the White Stripes to the synth-punk melodies of Matt & Kim, one can argue that behind every good man is an even better woman – or in this case beside. Thanks to their lush debut LP, "Pillow Talk," it is now time to add Kelsey Wilson and Alexander Beggins of Wild Child to the ever-growing list of talented twosomes.
What started as an acoustic pairing between Wilson and Beggins amidst their tour travels, has since blossomed into a full-blown six piece folk ensemble, rich with emotive vocals and a sundry assortment of stringed instruments and lively percussion. The album's title track begins like a familiar lullaby -- with a lilting ukulele melody and Wilson's tender vocals that are borderline angelic. Beggins' voice follows closely behind Wilson's, with a polished tone that seems to float weightlessly just below hers, never consuming it.
Despite the tranquil harmonies in "Pillow Talk," the album as a whole is anything but docile. The sonorous track, "The Tale of You & Me," is peppered with music breaks that cause you to lose yourself in the labyrinth of banjo, violin and cello melodies. This song demands your utmost attention, whether you like it or not.
It's easy to get absorbed in the band's arresting instrumentation, but easier still to identify with their anecdotal lyrics. "Silly Things" uses something as commonplace as a coffeepot to convey the sorrow in losing a lover and the day-to-day rituals that seem to accompany any relationship. It's enough to make you rummage through the closet for those dust covered mementos and let the nostalgia rush over you.
A 15-track album may seem like a lot to wrap your head around in one sitting. But, let me assure you, "Pillow Talk" is one of the rare releases from 2011 that begs to be played in its entirety. From the lulling yet heart-wrenching ballads to the feisty foot-stomping numbers composed of twang and southern grit – this album is of anthemic proportions. Wild Child is exactly what their moniker suggests – untamed and youthful in their melodies, spirited and candid in their lyrics.