The future of folk is Wildwood Kin – here’s why

The trio played a spectacular show at London’s Nells Jazz & Blues earlier this month. 

Folk is a family affair when it comes to Wildwood Kin. And that’s exactly how their show at the West London venue felt. With the release of their debut record Turning Tides last August the trio have been making their mark on a growing UK folk scene by making their sound accessible for the mainstream while staying true to the genre’s roots.

The girls kick off their set with the eerie drum intro to the lead single off their debut record, Daughter Warrior. The battle-like beating of the drum fits perfectly with the theme of the song and its female empowerment and leadership message. And with this, they have the crowd’s attention instantly. The band urge attendees to get closer to the stage, making this intimate affair seem even more special.

Wildwood Kin then head straight into a beautiful cover of Helplessly Hoping by folk rock legends Crosby, Stills & Nash which is followed by Run, another single off their debut record and a track which was played on BBC Radio 2 last year and “opened a lot of doors” as the girls say.

Another one of those moments was their appearance at last year’s BBC Radio 2 Live at Hyde Park when they supported Welsh indie rock icons Stereophonics. They were asked to learn a cover by the other bands playing the same festival, and Wildwood Kin decided on Dakota off the Stereophonics 2005 record Language. Sex. Violence. Other? and tonight they treat us to another performance of that cover. They transform the indie anthem into a stunning ballad with their killer vocal harmonies.

And the ballads really go down a treat on this evening. Listen, a song the trio never actually recorded, is just one of those with its tribal like drums. Another absolute treasure is On And On. This track off the band’s new record is one of their favourites, and understandably so. Not only is it a hauntingly beautiful tune but it also bears lots of personal memories. “It’s been very tough, we’ve lost two close family members in close succession.” They explain.

With an encore that is even more stripped back than the gig has been so far, Wildwood Kin leave a lasting impression on their crowd. The Valley is just their vocals and a guitar, it’s “how we started as a band” they say. And nothing is more inspiring to see than a band remembering their roots and showing their audience where they came from.