Album Review: Wet Leg – Wet Leg

The indie rock duo ride the breakthrough buzz to give us the sound of 22 in the key of pop-post-punk

“Let’s just do it for the fun of it and see what happens…” Rhian Teasdale and Hester Chambers told the BBC back in January – right around the point they became one of the biggest bands around without even releasing an album.

Arriving on a wave of expectation built entirely on just a handful of singles, Wet Leg’s full-length debut confirms what we all already seemed to know – turning industry buzz into a burst of joyful, painful, electric new indie that feels like it’s been stuck in our heads for months already. 

Finding the place where post-punk meets pop, Wet Leg trade in contradictions wherever they clash the loudest – deadpanning innuendos over wonky Bowie guitars before tackling self-loathing and anxiety with dancefloor dreampop. 

Wet Leg - Chaise Longue (Official Video)

First single ‘Chaise Longue’ still sounds fresh after months of airplay (part Parquet Courts stoner guitars, part Mean Girls winks), as does the sticky stomp of ‘Wet Dream’ (easily the best floor-filler about unrequited subconscious desire to also mention Buffalo 66 and car sex). 

Summing up the swell of apathy that undercuts the record’s raw emotion on ‘I Don’t Wanna Go Out’, the track stands as one of the most 2022 tracks of the year (“It used to be so fun, now everything just feels dumb, I wish I could care… And now I’m almost 28, still getting off my stupid face – a f**king nightmare I know I should care. Right now I don’t care…”). 

Elsewhere there’s brutal breakup tracks (“I feel sorry for your mum…”), sly Pulp references and a song that deserves an award for working in the lyric “Bioluminescent plankton sh*t” – all revelling in their multipart friction to end up somewhere completely different from wherever they started.

By the time ‘Too Late Now’ closes the album with a floating range that covers everything else that went before it, it’s hard not to think you’ve just heard a band making their mark with a smile and a sledgehammer. 

Started as a joke but building something genuinely meaningful out of their own ennui, Wet Leg gives us a band you can actually hear figuring things out in real-time. Less casual than effortless, a debut this exciting deserves the hype.  

Wet Leg start their UK tour in Newcastle on April 16, returning again in June, July and November for various dates around the country. Tickets are available here.