7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Tight edgy rock turns 80s synth pop. Shame (Shime?). :-),
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This review is from: Days Are Gone (Standard) (Audio CD)
I bought this album on the back of having seen Haim (pronounced "Hime" apparently) on Later and also watched their live iTunes festival performance and I must say I'm really disappointed with it. I was expecting a tight 70's influenced rock album having seen them doing their thing live and what I got was a vastly over-produced 80s pop album! Actually, when The Wire started, I thought that my iTunes had skipped to the start of Heartache Tonight by the Eagles for the first 20 seconds! (released in 1979 before anyone tells me that song was not from the 80s)
Are the songs good? No doubt they certainly are (hence the 3 stars), but they struggle to make an impression under the weight of programmed beats, samples and keyboard hooks that simply neuter their rock appeal and turn them into almost joyless covers, unrecognisable from their tight funky live counterparts. You would certainly never know that Haim are predominantly a guitar band from listening to this.
Trust me, I really like this band (particularly the bass player whose face emotes every note she plays, making her hugely sexy) but the album is an opportunity missed as far as I am concerned. They had the chance to make a cutting edge rock album, which I think could have catapulted them to massive things, but this record is not that. I have a feeling that classic rock is where the girls hearts lie and that someone in their management or record company told them that a straight rock record would be too "old school" for today's market.
I think anyone buying this on the back of a gig or live show will feel the same and, conversely, anyone loving this record first and going to see them live will probably be equally surprised and disappointed because they won't get what they are expecting either. The band just comes over as detached from their recordings as they are poles apart, which is a great shame (or should that be pronounced Shime?) :-).
I hope that next time they follow their hearts because I'm sure if they did, they could make a really important and special record.
Hopefully a live album will follow and then you can pay your money and take your choice of whichever side of Haim takes your fancy.