Meet Haim: three sisters who know how to rock

Kate Greer, Entertainment Editor

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 On stage are two electric guitars, one bass guitar, one black keyboard and multiple assorted drums. Each member of the music group knows how to play more than a dozen instruments, but there’s only so much space in the concert hall. They’re not a girl band, they say, they’re a band. When girl bands are mentioned, people tend to think of synchronized, sequin-clad dancers with microphones, who don’t play instruments and don’t write their own tracks. If Los Angeles-based Haim is anything, they are certainly not that.

Until 2013, the band was virtually the music world’s best kept secret, although Este, Danielle and Alana Haim had decided to form a rock group way back in 2007. For their first gig ever, they performed at a deli in Los Angeles and were, believe it or not, paid in soup. Five years later in 2012, Haim released its EP, “Forever.” Danielle claims their first real live show was “maybe a disaster,” but it was impressive enough to attract the attention of a United Kingdom record company. Haim’s first full-length album, “Days Are Gone,” was in music stores around in the world by late 2013. 

If you don’t listen to their songs, you’ve probably seen pictures of them on Taylor Swift’s Instagram feed. Or maybe you saw three seconds of one of their music videos during this year’s presentation of the “Best New Artist” award at the Grammys, which they absolutely should have won. Although Sam Smith and Iggy Azalea were considered the frontrunners of the competition, I didn’t count Haim out and hoped desperately that the Grammys would diverge from the usual three-hour popularity contest style.

But I still believe Haim will experience a fame explosion, and here’s why: they know how to write an album and they’ve mastered the art of performing. No two songs sound alike on “Days Are Gone,” and if you ask me, that’s what a record should sound like. From the rock shuffle of “The Wire” to the dubstep of “My Song 5,” Haim can pretty much take any style they want and master it. Their Fleetwood Mac and Sheryl Crow covers are just as fun and engaging as their renditions of tunes by Beyonce and Miley Cyrus. In fact, I enjoy Haim’s “XO” much more than the original Beyonce version.

When it comes to performing, Haim excels. They don’t need meat dresses or inflatable flying hot dogs to put on an awesome show. While the sisters play all the instruments, sing solos and battle it out on the drums that cover the stage, Este, Danielle and Alana also wildly flip their trademark hair around and often aren’t afraid to crowd surf. 

 If you want to listen to some truly incredible music, Haim’s album “Days Are Gone” is on iTunes and Spotify, along with several other great songs from their earlier EPs, such as “Send Me Down” and “Better Off.” Their collaborations with Kid Cudi, Calvin Harris and M83 are also worth looking into. I have no doubt that Haim is the next big thing, despite the fact that they lost the Grammy. Taylor Swift lost “Best New Artist” in 2008, and just look where she is today. Haim’s next album should be out soon, say the sisters, though an official release date hasn’t been announced.

But they don’t have to hurry. “Days Are Gone” has been playing in my car in December, and I’m still not bored.  

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2015-05-19 08:18:57

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