When Haim popped up on the indie radar as BBC’s Sound of 2013 winners and achieved what Adele managed in 2008, the curiosity of many was piqued and eyebrows were raised.

Well, to be fair, they had no album then. Comprising American sisters Este, Danielle and Anala Haim and drummer Dash Hutton, the sisters’ musical roots can be traced back to a family band in their adolescence (RockinHaim).

The current lineup has shed Mom and Dad (which must be a relief for the 20-somethings) and has been lauded by the likes of Brit singer-songwriter Ellie Goulding (who topped the same BBC industry poll 3 years earlier) as “interesting, different and really talented”. 

Days Are Gone, the inaugural full-length by the indie pop band from California, has been recurrently compared to the 45-million-copies-selling Rumours by Fleetwood Mac, and rightly so. However, merely writing them off as an uninspired duplicate of the veteran rockers does them considerable injustice, as their latest effort is much more than just a conglomeration of 70s inspired soft rock.

Produced by James Ford, the man behind the mixer for Arctic Monkey’s Humbug and Florence and the Machine’s Ceremonials, Days Are Gone is a delightful concoction of R&B, pop and indie. It is, at its core, an unmistakable nod to their personal luminaries Destiny’s Child and contemporary influence Jessie Ware.

At first impression, the collection has more than it’s fair share of radio-friendly singles. “Falling”, “Forever” and “The Wire”, the first 3 songs, carry a flightiness that commands a surprisingly instant appeal, a testament of Haim’s ability to churn out catchy tunes and unforgettable hooks. 


Filled with a kookiness that’s likeable and infectious, the sisters are certainly charming, overflowing and idiosyncratic. We’re certainly no strangers to sibling bands. Peruse the history of some of the most celebrated bands and you’ll find the erratic relationship of the Gallagher brothers (the driving force behind Oasis) or the dynamic, almost telepathic stage chemistry in the Van Halen brothers. The Gibb brothers (Bee Gees), are ranked among the best selling music artistes of all time, and The Everly Brothers spawned a multitude of imitators. Bands with siblings seem to be a bewitchingly potent blueprint for phenomenal musical icons.

And yet, the trio feel like the siblings you know down the street – worlds apart in disposition, constantly bickering, yet fiercely protective of each other. It’s their quirky, eccentric, larger-than-life personas that are expressed so faithfully in Days Are Gone. Haim’s lyrics (relationships and loss) won’t withstand the scrutiny of anyone scouring for hidden meaning and metaphor, but they’re not intended to. “My Song 5” is a dubstep-influenced number that’s as engaging as it is lyrically straightforward, while “Don’t Save Me” carries a clear message of yearning and love. Days Are Gone plays out with frivolity and whimsicality, yet draws you in with lead singer Danielle’s captivating delivery, interjections of “ahs” and “oohs” and mellifluous DC3-esque vocal harmonies.

Ultimately, Days Are Gone is an unpredictable chemical reaction. While its imperfections almost seem to increase its appeal, it also feels burdened by familiarity and cliché. Songs such as “Falling” and “Running If You Call My Name” can sound stale, monotonous and flat musically after repeated doses, and the album borders on being repetitive and formulaic. Nevertheless, in a genre so saturated with minimalistic instrumentation and synth heavy melodies, Haim’s full sound, along with their harmony-heavy vocals and rhythm-centric bass lines, offers a freshness that’s aurally arresting.

Of course, you can be the judge of whether or not Haim is worth the hype on January 25 next year at Laneway Festival. With over 69, 000 likes on their Facebook page, the indie music festival has been gearing up for the main event by releasing snippets and tidbits of the performing bands.

A key component any music fest’s allure is the appeal of the lineup. Striking a crucial balance between crowd drawers and up-and-coming talents, the Laneway 2014 mix includes synthpop trio CHVRCHES, indie rock band Daughter and, of course, Haim.

Album Details
Album Name: Days Are Gone
Rating: 3.7/5
Language: English
Genre: Indie Pop
Record Label: Polydor
Release Date: Sep 27, 2013

Track list:
1. Falling
2. Forever
3. The Wire
4. If I Could Change Your Mind
5. Honey & I
6. Don’t Save Me
7. Days Are Gone
8. My Song 5
9. Go Slow
10. Let Me Go
11. Running If You Call My Name