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The Wild Reeds

Wednesday, April 17
Show | 8pm // Doors | 7pm
$14 / Day Of : $16

The Wild Reeds are a band led by women, and that matters. Not a sister band, not a girl group, but a band fronted by three women, all talented singers, songwriters, and multi-instrumentalists in their own right: Kinsey Lee, Mackenzie Howe, and Sharon Silva, with drummer Nick Jones and bass player Nick Phakpiseth providing the Los Angeles-based band’s rhythmic foundation. Like a harmony at its euphoric best, the leads’ powerful — and powerfully distinct — voices merge to form a sound that can only be The Wild Reeds. On their third LP, Cheers, the band comes together to create an ode to the joys and pains of camaraderie.

The Wild Reeds’ previous LPs, Blind and Brave (2014) and The World We Built (2017), and EPs, Best Wishes (2016) and New Ways To Die (2018), caught press attention from outlets including NPR Music (including a Tiny Desk Concert), Billboard, Rolling Stone Country, Noisey, and Garden & Gun, in addition to radio play from influential stations like KEXP and KCRW. And now arrives Cheers: a career highlight achieved by giving each writer considerable latitude, in the end creating a singular work out of three striking songwriting voices.

On Cheers, Lee, Howe, and Silva leaned into their differences for the first time, giving one another unprecedented amounts of freedom to execute their own songs. Each was allowed room to pursue her vision, while always leaving an open door for the other members to step in and collaborate. “We decided to explore our individuality,” says Howe. “It was a scary thing for us, because when you have three writers, you often have to do your best to tame your differences and come to some sort of agreement writing-wise, sonically, stylistically. It was the first time we said, ‘Screw that, why don’t we just record the songs the way they should be done?’”

For all the exploration on Cheers, the result is still tight and cohesive. The album makes room for infectious sing-along anthems (opening track “Moving Target”), tinges of R&B (“Lose My Mind”), lilting ‘60s pop-rock waltzes that build to resounding finishes (“Cheers,” “Get Better”), haunting balladry (“Run and Hide,” “My Name”), and even a gloriously hook-heavy track Lee sheepishly admits started as a tongue-in-cheek pop punk throwback (“P.S. Nevermind”). Every song sounds fresh, but all of them sound like The Wild Reeds. “For me, it felt no holds barred, limitless, like I could step up to the plate,” Silva says. “The record feels very communal, and that’s part of the reason we called it ‘Cheers.’ It felt like, ‘Hey, we’re all in this together and we’re all focusing on what we’re getting better at.’ We could let go of what we’re supposed to sound like and all reach a higher potential.”