Most bands traditionally hone their chops via the hard slog; playing to a scattering of people in dingy venues on wet Tuesday nights. Wet Leg took a different approach. The Isle of Wight duo, who formed in 2019 and attained official Buzz Band status last year when debut single Chaise Longue went viral, recorded their entire album before they’d ever played to an audience.
As it happens, their lack of live experience is inconsequential. Vocalist Rhian Teasdale’s frosty insouciance seeps confidently into these 12 songs, leaving Strokes-inspired jangly indie-rock (Being in Love), glam-rock stomps (Oh No) and the satisfying gloopy traipse of Loving You in its elegant wake. Wet Dream recalls noughties indie act The Long Blondes but there’s a modern twist to their sound too, as heard on the synthy New York cool of Angelica and the taut twang of Chaise Longue, the latter offset by a Julia Jacklin-style dreaminess.
Teasdale and bandmate Hester Chambers’s lyrics curtly nod to the trials and tribulations of modern twentysomething life, even if they occasionally fall into an ungainly pattern of rhyming dictionary shtick. Even so, tracks like I Don’t Wanna Go Out mark Wet Leg out as more than just flavour of the month, its gentle lilt swerving and slanting into woozy, darker territory at unexpected moments. As debut albums go, you can safely deem this a triumph.