Support from Honeyglaze
I can't remember the last time I went to the Art Centre. It was always my favourite Norwich venue, full of so much charm and character. Stepping back into the old converted church, which has changed a lot over the years, was like becoming a teenager again. The sense of nostalgia that washed over me was a little overwhelming. Although everything in the main room was exactly as I remembered it disappointingly the tombstone embedded floor had been covered with some rather unattractive wooden weave flooring.
normally I've been covering gigs with on the Guestlist as a reviewer and taking the odd photo from the crowd but for this show as we weren't able to cover photos elsewhere I covered it with a proper camera on photo pass from the photo pit for the first 3 songs
Anyway, normally I've been covering gigs on the Guestlist as a reviewer and taking the odd photo from the crowd but for this show as we weren't able to cover photos elsewhere so I covered it with a proper photo pass from the photo pit for the first 3 songs. It was only the second gig I’d ever done “professional” photography for. Standing waiting for the bands to come on, it was safe to say I had no idea what I was doing. I could see the other photographers on the other side of the stage but didn't dare go talk to them! After about ten minutes and a few firm words with myself and I headed over to speak to them only to find they were all lovely and not only did they help with the whole photo pit thing they even gave me some advice on using my camera!
After lots of camera talk and waiting around it was time for Honeyglaze to take to the stage. I'd listened to the handful of songs they had on Spotify so had a rough idea what to expect. As with many bands I've seen live lately they were much louder and more intense sound live than recorded.
While overall fitting into the shoegaze genre both in style and stance, for most of the set they quite literally gazed at their shoes the band's style infused many different elements from within the genre. At times their sound was dream pop-esque somewhat similar to Lush's Split record where at others their sound became more manic and self indulgent with big guitar solos drawing likenesses to bands such as My Bloody Valentine.
Honeyglaze were mesmerising to watch, and while not particularly engaging with the crowd had a stage presence that beamed confidence. They presented as far more established than they are.
I wasn't familiar with most of the set but enjoyed it nonetheless. Honeyglaze are definitely a band to watch. It's easy to see why Wet Leg hand picked them to support.
Quick toilet and bar dash to get my oh so rock n roll Diet Coke and we were on to Wet Leg! I was super excited for this gig. Having spent about two years living on the Isle of Wight before moving back to Norfolk I feel slightly bonded to the Wet Leg girls. Not much exciting happens on the island (I mean there's Level 42 and The Bees but that's about it) so for two islanders to get a number one album is quite amazing!
Despite being a two piece the gig was, as I expected, played with a full band. There was very limited interaction with the crowd which for a more established band I see as going through the motions, arrogance or they simply can't be bothered but I think in the case of Wet Leg it was a lack of confidence and something I think will grow and develop the more shows they play. It was noticeable at several points that Rhian and Hester were looking at each other for a bit of reassurance, which was quite endearing.
The band, whose sound fits perfectly into the Bedroom Rock genre, came out and blasted straight onto Being In Love, although I have to admit the focus of my attention for the first three songs was photography and making sure I didn't get into the other photographers way so I didn't give the music nearly enough attention! Photos completed I could get on with taking in the music.
I'd listened to the band's self-titled debut a lot since its release although some songs had definitely been on heavier rotation than others. Piece of Shit went down well with the crowd before they moved on to what might be my favourite Too Late Now which includes a lyric about how women don't need dating apps to tell them if they're thin, fat or if they should shave their "rat" which is totally relatable and it’s the no nonsense way Wet Leg deliver what they want to say that sets them apart from other bands.
I felt they lost the crowd a little during the slower Oblivious, but soon won them back as they powered through singles Oh No and Ur Mum. For a lot of the gig I found myself watching two girls in the front row who not only sang every word they even had dance routines. One even had a Wet Leg phone case to elevate her into super fan territory!
During the new song Abducted by a UFO lead vocalist Rhian offloads her guitar to a roadie in favour of bouncing round the stage and having a great time! Guitar back in hand they head on to single Angelica which was released this February before the moment I think most of the crowd who'd stood fairly still for the majority of the gig had been waiting for, Chaise Longue! I think all the crowd were word perfect with plenty of bouncing and everyone shouting “WHAT” during the chorus of sorts. Great end to a gig that had more than lived up to my expectations and excitement. I look forward to watching Wet Leg's career grow and develop.