Wet Leg: 'Everything feels a bit overwhelming'
- Credit: Hollie Fernando
They're one of the most talked about new acts in the country, and Wet Leg will be at Camden's Electric Ballroom this month to promote their debut album.
The band was born out of a pact made between Hester Chambers Rhian Teasdale on top of a Ferris wheel at the End of The Road Festival in 2019, and the name is concocted from random pairs of emojis.
Firm friends since meeting at Isle of Wight College, they played their first 20 minute set at - where else? - The Isle of Wight Festival - and their debut single, the infectiously repetitive post punk track Chaise Longue, went viral last June.
Since then, the twentysomething duo have enjoyed a surreal rise to fame, their danceable brand of surreal, quirky indie rock heaped with praise by the likes of Iggy Pop, Jack White and Dave Grohl.
It's fair to say it's been a whirlwind year, and Chambers - lead guitarist and backing vocalist - says they haven't had a chance to reflect on what they've achieved.
"I think generally everything feels a bit overwhelming," she admits.
“We are really, really busy and kind of just taking it day by day. When we do get a moment we look through our camera roll on our phones and share memories on a Whatsapp group.”
- 1 'Extremely dangerous' men convicted after girl kidnapped and raped
- 2 The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee flypast: Where, and when, the planes will fly over north and east London
- 3 Call for investment in 'joke' Harlesden park
- 4 'Strictest' headteacher to be documentary subject
- 5 Jailed: North London members of Essex drugs supply network
- 6 Police officer sacked after she 'failed' woman murdered by husband
- 7 Can you answer these 10 GCSE questions designed for 16-year-olds?
- 8 Second man charged with fatal stabbing of Emmanuel Odunlami
- 9 Labour accused of 'power grab' move over committee appointments
- 10 Jailed: 7 north London offenders put behind bars in April
With Teasdale on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, the band were in the unique situation of spending most of their time together on the island during lockdown, and gaining a following with few live performances.
“It was pretty jarring the first time we played a gig off the island," she says. "It was Latitude (in 2021) and we thought it was exciting to be going to a festival and wondered if anyone would come and see our set. People did come and that was unexpected.”
Chambers' upbringing included only rare trips off the island.
“Growing up I didn’t go many places. I would sometimes go to London for gigs as a teen, but I’m the wrong person for this question. I’m a country girl and even finding a Greggs in London is hard for me.”
Success has ushered in a very different lifestyle. Having just returned from an extensive North American tour which included an Oscars pre-party and performing on Jimmy Fallon's The Tonight Show, and The Late Late Show with James Corden, they are now embarking on a huge tour across the UK and Europe including the Camden date, which had to be upgraded twice due to phenomenal demand.
Chambers admits the band’s future calendar looks "a bit scary", but insists they are excited to perform to UK crowds in support of their self-titled debut album, which was released by Domino on April 8.
Mostly recorded in London in April 2021, Chambers says of the process: “Rhian wrote a lot of the songs in lockdown by herself, so we could finally make them as a band and write other bits-and-bobs for them. Before we went into the studio we spent three weeks going through the demos and looking at how they were going to work as a band."
Wet Leg are at the Electric Ballroom on April 26 and at Kentish Town Forum on November 23.