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Wild Reeds’ lovely vocal harmonies aren’t enough to wipe clean a generic indie-pop polish

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On “Only Songs,” the opening track from their new album The World We Built (Dualtone), the three bright-voiced singers of Wild Reeds proclaim that “the only thing that saves me are the songs I sing,” a sentiment their ebullient, richly harmonized delivery confirms. Kinsey Lee, Sharon Silva, and Mackenzie Howe perform with a gusto that feels downright therapeutic, but while the trio’s spirit is infectious and they’re lovely to hear, the songs themselves don’t quite measure up—they often push a shinier, bigger sound that glosses the group’s rustic roots with a generic, indie-pop polish. Other songs feel banal and workmanlike in melodic shape or sentiment: “Fall to Sleep” confronts the drag of everyday demands, and the narrator of “Everything Is Better (in Hindsight)” muses over a lover who left her for an ex. If listeners don’t get a kick from the singing of Wild Reeds, there’s not much else to pull them in.   v

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