I’ve already discussed HAIM recently on this blog, and I still find their sunny harmonies like musical comfort food, but I had a startling epiphany about them during the week that I wanted to share.
Here’s the cover of the debut album by 1970s Jesus rock pioneers The 2nd Chapter of Acts:
And here’s a recent publicity shot for 2010s guitar pop band HAIM (the photo’s copyrighted to Rolling Stone, so you’ll need to click offsite to see it).
I understand that every Scandinavian Metal band essentially looks the same, but I can’t think of two bands with different gender balances and from different eras that look so similar. I think the only reason that the similarity hasn’t been noted earlier is:
Even though they’re separated by 40 years, the HAIM and 2CoA have a surprising amount in common. They’re both from California, they’re both trios of siblings, and they’re both centred on vocal harmonies.
But they also have some key differences – 2nd Chapter of Acts are an early Christian band, from a bygone era before every faith-based band sounded like U2. While HAIM are a secular band, and their most outspoken member is bass player Este Haim, whose Twitter handle is jizzie mcguire, and whose tweets reference her labia.
If the two groups were ever to collaborate, this closing song from HAIM’s 2017 album Something To Tell You certainly has a stately, hymn like atmosphere. There is a recent live video, directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, which is faithful to the studio original – on both Danielle Haim’s guitar is the primary instrument, ringing out with cavernous reverb, while her sisters join in with ghostly harmonies. But I couldn’t embed it from Youtube, so here’s a recent live version: