Alana. Danielle. Este. The Haim sisters have been on an incredibly successful charm offensive over the past eighteen months or so, since their 'Forever' EP of demos emerged online. The trio (plus touring drummer Dash Hutton) wowed the US music industry at SXSW 2012 before doing the same to the UK lot at last year's Great Escape. A year of semi-hit singles, sold out shows, and prominent festival slots have left the final hurdle for their early career - the debut album, 'Days Are Gone', out today.
The Haim backlash is already in full flow, and a recent stripped back performance on 'The Andrew Marr Show' with Dear Leader/new Haim fan David Cameron hasn't exactly helped. Although I'm not really sure why our Prime Minister's musical taste is of any great interest. I thought, you know, his policies were more important.
Anyway, 'Days Are Gone' is nothing particularly new for both yaysayers and naysayers - carrying over much of the material we've seen previously that has seen the band criticised/celebrated as Fleetwood Mac knock-offs amongst other snide remarks. Yet there is more to the Haim sound than simply a flurry of nostalgia - more like a unique fusion of RnB, folk, blues and sassy rock and roll.
There is evidence of evolution on 'Days Are Gone' however with a bolder, harder edge on certain tracks such as on the "balls-out" 'Let Me Go', and the unexpectedly abrasive hip-hop style of 'My Song 5'. The boldness is welcome in small doses but the true enjoyment comes from the characteristic uplifting hooks and soothing melodies, perhaps best seen on previous singles, 'The Wire' and 'Don't Save Me'.
The blissful 'Honey & I' and atmospheric closer 'Running If You Call My Name' show that it's not just all about the previously released and already well-trodden fare but equally, those singles give the album a slightly top-heavy feel in terms of quality. Nonetheless, 'Days Are Gone' will take any listener on a rewarding musical journey. If you can embrace a bit of nostalgia, that is. Oh and Haim rhymes with time.
'Days Are Gone' is available to purchase at amazon.co.uk. Find more info at haimtheband.com.