It’s a sunny day in London and the HAIM sisters are ready to show Ally Pally why they deserve to sell-out two nights at the legendary venue and play for 20,000 people.
The three Californian siblings are in the midst of the European leg of their ‘Sister Sister Sister’ world tour in support of their brilliant second record, Something To Tell You.
They come out all guns blazing with pulsating bass-y synths that lead into anthemic early single ‘Falling’, before fan favourite ‘Don’t Save Me’ – both taken from their first album Days Are Gone.
The crowd gets their first taste of new music with ‘Little Of Your Love’, a cheery pop hit that the audience can chant back, which contrasts the deep, heavy bass of ‘My Song 5’; the fans dance enthusiastically nonetheless.
‘You Never Knew’ sees lead singer and guitarist Danielle Haim switch to an acoustic guitar and it proves a hit with the audience.
The lead single from their second album, ‘Want You Back’, causes some controversy amongst the sisters over which member is more influential in its creation. Youngest sister, Alana Haim, ensured the song was worked on in the album process and composed the opening synths, whilst middle sibling, Danielle, composed the drums that give the song its foundation. Oldest sister, Este, introduced slap bass to the mix.
Individually, they bring vital components to the band, meaning that when they come together they can make musical magic in the form of ‘Want You Back’.
The thrilling thing about a HAIM show is that you never know what is going to happen. There will always be a number of impromptu jam sessions. Tonight saw the writing of HAIM’s huge new hit ‘Eating A Snicker’s In Front Of 10,000 People’ sang by Este. About having low blood sugar, it could be hailed as the next big type 1 diabetic anthem.
Before introducing debut single ‘Forever’, Alana told the crowd about how the band had found success in London after years of no recognition back home in LA, so decided to move to the city. When they played this song in a small venue in Camden in 2012, it was the first time anyone had sang back the words to any of their music.
Fast-forward six years and they are selling out one of the capital’s biggest venues twice over and every fan in the place knows every word. Their journey has been staggering and tonight proves that they are on the way up to the big leagues.
After the lighters-in-the-air moment with ‘Night So Long’, they close the night with ‘Right Now’, where each of the band members take to drums at the back of the stage to play intense solos.. The energy fills the room as fans scream, jump and dance as confetti rains down upon.
HAIM are all about family. I went to this show with my own sister and there is no better bonding moment than seeing these three siblings play together and have so much fun in the process.. It’s a reminder to the 10,000 people leaving the venue tonight just how important family is.
Words by George Press
Featured Image was originally taken at Haim’s recent Primavera Sound Festival performance and is credited to Sergio Albert.