Anxiety about speaking to a group of strangers is common to many of us, including songwriters who write intimately of their experiences and then sing those lyrics in front of hundreds of people every night on tour. For Wild Ones frontwoman Danielle Sullivan, this anxiety goes a step further, to paresthesia, a numbness in her hands and feet when faced with going on stage.

In the band’s new album, “Mirror Touch,” Sullivan turns this into a theme of sorts, returning repeatedly to the moment where our fears could leave us frozen, or we could engage and move ahead. The record also builds on the dreamy textures of Wild Ones’ first album, “Keep it Safe,” with a bigger sound palette of synths and drum pads. Album highlights “Paresthesia” and “No Money” are fully realized pop gems with both thoughtful lyrics and the kind of hooks you have to move with.

We recorded this session in front of a studio audience at OPB. Sullivan talked with State of Wonder‘s Aaron Scott about the new collection of songs, performance anxiety, and her bolder voice as a songwriter.

Watch the songs played in our studio above, hear the interview below and download free MP3s to take with you.

Update 8/24/18:  Wild Ones announced earlier this month that they’re ending their run as a band, with two final shows Friday 8/24 and Saturday 8/25 at Mississippi Studios.


Audio recording and mixes: Steven Kray, with Nalin Silva, Randy Layton, and William Ward
Editor: Jarratt Taylor
Videographers: Nate Sjol, Jarratt Taylor, Nick Hennessy, Andrew Barrick, and Braden Spotts
Interview: Aaron Scott
Executive Producer: David Christensen