Indie Crush: HAIM (And Why You Can’t Rush a Good Thing)


HAIM (pronounced like “rhyme”) are 3 sisters from the west coast with a sound that I like to call “synthesizer-at-the-farm-market.” One part floppy hat Fleetwood Mac, the other disco-child Ladyhawke.

Listening to their songs you’d think HAIM had been putting out music for the last 10 years, honing their sound into the catchy, heartfelt awesomeness it is today. But the fact is, after playing music together since childhood, and writing songs together since 2006, they only started releasing music last year. Even then, the 4-song EP, entitled Forever, was recorded 5 times before the girls were finally happy with it.

“Forever” Official Video –

In contrast to today’s social media blitzkrieg, a low profile can work in an artist’s favor.

HAIM embody two rare qualities in the world of independent art-making – patience and temperance. In contrast to the social media excess of half-baked demos and washed out Instagram photos that accompany many of today’s self-propelled indie bands, these ladies went the way of the monastery – grinding out a handful of songs with the doors closed in the privacy of their own home. They played a bunch of local gigs, but basically went about their normal daily lives – college, work, and touring with fellow musicians.

There have been blog posts dedicated to them, praise from various music festivals, but HAIM never really “broke out.” It was more like they suddenly appeared, filling a place on our iPods that we didn’t even realize was empty.

In October, Red Bull’s Sound & Vision project dedicated an episode to HAIM’s story of growing up in a musical household, and the central role their parents (especially their father) played (sometimes literally – on the drums) in their journey.

And then there’s the style component. If you want to know what their music sounds like, just look at the way they dress. A certain je ne sais quoi of eclectic tom boyishness, vintage accoutrements, and a romantic and fun-loving spirit. Case in point, their latest video for “Falling” is visually stunning – where every frame looks like something you’d want to pin to a Pinterest board.

You can download HAIM’s music on iTunes and Amazon, and expect a full-length album from them later this year.

A big thanks to my DJ/photographer friend Giovanni di Mola for turning me onto HAIM and for art director/DJ Kurtis Powers for inspiring this blog post.