It was more than a packed house at the Biltmore Cabaret on Wednesday night for the anticipated headlining debut of Brooklyn trio Wet.
The sold-out show in Vancouver was one of many on their current tour, and for good reason. Just two weeks ago, Wet released their full-length debut Don’t You to stellar reviews. The album, crafted by songwriter/vocalist Kelly Zutrau and multi-instrumentalists Marty Sulkow and Joe Valle, is an electro-pop evolution that combines sultry, haunting, and heart.
Having had Don’t Wanna Be Your Girl on my playlist for about two years now (and no, it’s not considered obsessive when it’s this good), Wet’s album certainly did not disappoint. And neither did their live show.
The Biltmore’s intimate set up could not have been more fitting to Wet’s sound as they opened with “It’s All in Vain” to put this humpday crowd in the mood. The sound was a tad off at one point, even Zutrau asked if there was another song playing simultaneously. But it was all a laugh and very quickly forgotten as was they played their single “Deadwater” which got fans moving. The beauty of the Biltmore is it feels more like a cafe, or someone’s living room, and with Zutrau’s delicate voice along with the band’s atmospheric sounds, the fans in the venue seemed captivated.
For most of the show, cellphones were out of sight – a rarity these days. But the dim lights and stage smoke weren’t all that camera friendly, which enabled fans to genuinely enjoy the show as an experience rather than through a lens. Visibly on stage was an additional member, touring drummer Gabe Smith, who was introduced halfway through the show. “We’re really happy to be back here,” said Zutrau in her quiet speaking voice. “It’s our first time playing here since our album came out.” And as they transitioned to “These Days”, a minimal yet beautifully produced track, erie silence fell through the crowd. The silence was replaced with cheers and singing when “Don’t Wanna Be Your Girl” began- a very fitting song for many Vancouver women such as myself.
The singing continued on to “You’re The Best” and “All the Ways,” tracks that showcase the many layers to their songs. “Weak” ended their short set, which was just shy of an hour. Although overall Wet’s show wasn’t a major production, it didn’t really need much more than Zutrau’s exquisite voice to create a powerful musical landscape. And with Don’t You’s success so far, expect this humble landscape to grow and take over larger venues in the near future.