Cheeky British post-punk duo Wet Leg boomed quickly on the strength of their single “Chaise Longue” and its followups. Mind you, Vocalist Rhian Teasdale and guitarist Hester Chambers drop their debut Wet Leg album on April 8 via Domino. And yet Wet Leg already became the buzziest band to play DC city, much less DC9, in a recent tour performance.
Wet Leg arrived at DC9 fresh from New York City, where they sold out the 1,800-capacity Brooklyn Steel, to perform for a totally enthralled capacity crowd of about 150 people. That’s what happens when you blow up while on your previously scheduled debut US tour!
To date, Wet Leg have released five singles from the upcoming album of 12 tracks. In a 15-song set at DC9 on March 11, Wet Leg performed all five, closing the set with latest release, “Angelica,” and the extended sexual double entrendre that put them on the map, “Chaise Longue.” “Chaise Longue” proved emblematic of the band’s sense of humor; on stage, Wet Leg steadfastly planted their tongues in their cheeks and delivered each number with deadpan whimsy.
As people filed eagerly into the venue for the show, the band’s commitment to extended jokes became clear. A member of the Wet Leg support team provided everyone with a lobster bib like those depicted in the video for the song “Wet Dream,” which the band played early in the show. In the song, Rhian sang of *appearing* in your wet dream, and the video runs wildly away with a concept that it is only fitting therefore that Rhian is a lobster.
Watch the official music video for “Wet Dream” by Wet Leg on YouTube:
In concert, Rhian and Hester were clearly excited to perform in DC for the first time. They were 100 percent a pair of college friends with an elaborate in-joke, but one that was merrily shared with anyone else who wanted in on it. Rhian’s pleasing and sweet voice could have carried the evening alone, and she and Hester threw themselves into their guitars and truly rocked DC9 with cheerful abandon. The charming pair were having the time of their lives, and so was the audience.
Backing Wet Leg were a talented touring band that consisted of bassist Ellis Durand, drummer Henry Holmes, and guitarist Joshua Omead Mobaraki. These whipsmart bandmates certainly deserve shared credit for Wet Leg’s snappy sound. Rhythm section Henry and Ellis mindfully laid a sonic framework while technically minded Josh filled in parts with synthesizers and strings as required. For the show, the band were all clad in matching outfits that suggested they were the waitstaff of an establishment called Angelica’s, a reference to that latest Wet Leg single. The uniforms added to the subversive sense of fun that permeated the evening.
Wet Leg travel throughout the United States to wrap their tour in Los Angeles on March 30. We highly recommend you see them along the way!
Here are some photos of Wet Leg performing at DC9 on March 11, 2022. All photos copyright and courtesy of David LaMason.