I just recently discovered the band Wet Leg a week ago and the concept behind them is still a bit confusing to me. Not only their song’s names but their identity as a band and their music.
The name of their band itself is actually British slang that means a self-pitying person, though I’m not sure if that has any connection to the duo.
Wet Leg really epitomizes what an indie band is. Their song “Chaise Longue” like most of their music is indie-rock and post-punk and it’s far from mainstream.
A chaise longue is apparently a type of lounge chair and takes a central part of this song. It was a chair given to one of the band members by her grandpa and she wrote the song while sitting on it.
While typically I write about artists I am a huge fan of, I wanted to try something new out for a change and listen to something more outside my comfort zone.
The song itself is honestly pretty good and I might have misjudged how odd their live performance of this song compares to their pre-recorded version. The instrumental intro of “Chaise Longue” is catchy and sounds like a typical drum and electric guitar composure found in most indie-rock songs and the instrumentals of this entire song are fairly upbeat and infectious. Instrumental-wise I can most certainly see the appeal of their style of music.
An aspect of this song that makes me feel conflicted is the verses of their music. It is a lot more of speak-singing than actual singing and the smoothness of speak-singing is more difficult to reflect in a live performance than it is in a recording. I enjoy the recording more than the live version of this song and that is something I rarely say about most music.
The lyrics are full of innuendos and underlying jokes that are amusing at times and tie in well with the fresh melody of the song.
A few lines that I found quite unique were from the first verse “Mommy, daddy, look at me | I went to school and I got a degree | All my friends call it “the big D” | I went to school and I got the big D | I got the big D”. Of course, these lyrics are clearly not talking about a grade. The duo often uses what we call tongue-in-cheek lyrics that they write in an ironic manner and it does come off that way.
Another set of lyrics that follow this mocking serious manner of songwriting is seen later in their song. “Is your muffin buttered? | Would you like us to assign someone to butter your muffin?” I find this line amusing because it is a dialogue said by a character from the 2004 hit movie “Mean Girls”.
Followed by the repetitive chorus of “On the chaise longue, on the chaise longue, on the chaise longue | All day long, on the chaise longue.” The repetitiveness of the chorus causes this song to inadvertently be likable and is meant to be listened to in a chill, playful way.
A similar setup to these lyrics makes a tie in with this movie quote after the chorus sings “Is your mother worried? | Would you like us to assign someone to worry your mother?” This was my favorite line of the entire song.
Personally, I wouldn’t listen to this song or other Wet Leg songs if I was actively listening to music. I would prefer to have it on in the background if I’m doing homework or lost in thought.
Suppose it’s good to step outside of your comfort zone sometimes, I might leave this song review as a fan after all.
If you’re interested, check out the “Chaise Longue” music video.