Haim at Whelan’s – Review
Haim @ Whelan’s Saturday 25th May 2013
“Never thought that I would grow so old of seeing the gold”…everyone who is anyone queued early, squeezing in to get the best spot at the tour kick off of Haim in Whelan’s on Saturday. Defying the age demographic, the lucky ones who managed get their hands on the tickets of gold, were treated to meeting the grungy trio outside the venue as they came out to say hello to fans – young and old felt the same: “We’re not worthy, We’re not worthy” that type of moment!
Haim sisters – Este, Danielle and Alanah plus drummer Dash Hutton were the influential winners of this year’s BBC Sound of Poll award with previous recipients including Dizzee Rascal, Florence & The Machine, Lady Gaga and Adele. Their sound consists of grunge infused nu-folk riffs, nostalgic electro keys reminiscent of Fleetwood Mac complimented by R&B style harmonies similar to En Vogue. Packed to the rafters, there was heat and an electrifying atmosphere before they even managed to head bang their locks up onto stage.
Kicking off with the super slick and sexy – “Better Off” they immediately took the house by the nether regions with their moody, cool attitudes. They have fascinating stage presence, unique long grunge hair and their facial expressions, especially those of older sister Este, will become iconic. Este clearly looses herself in the music, expressing a deep connection with her art form and instrument. After the nostalgic guitar riff infused “Honey & I”, Este threw off her jacket revealing a racy lace ensemble, she breathed to a male fan in the crowd: “You’re trouble. You. Are. Trouble!” sending other male pulses racing. Danielle, the lead singer and guitarist, is skilled beyond her years displaying this during “Oh Well” with her Neil Young-esque guitar solo and her hushed, dulcet tone is similar to Patti Smith and Chrissie Hyndes, is simply mind bending.
Experimenting with some new pieces, they performed “Falling” their new single a synth oriented anthem, this song displayed Haims technical skill. Alanah, the youngest band member, was an inspiration – she practically makes love to her microphone, her rhythm guitar, her drums and every instrument she places her hands on – throwing herself around the stage, lost in every moment. The crowd loved every minute of it screaming for more, we loved every moment about this song.
“Go Slow” and “Send Me Down” two timeless classics and should be on the soundtrack to every movie for at least the next five decades. Thanking everyone for “being so cool” and getting “what’s the craic” wrong, the band went on to absolutely rock out to “Don’t Save Me” and “Forever” delighted by the crowd’s response. Three pointed guitars into the crowd they shot each everyone of us with their severe talent and natural musical ability. Leaving the stage the crowd thumped the ceiling and floor for more and they returned gave their finale song “Let Me Go” ending with a drum quartet. Sublime ending.
Haim gave an amazing performance, raw talent in the flesh they are probably one the most inspiring bands of the last decade that I have seen live. Love them or hate them, Haim will be around for a while and judging by their initial hits their musical legacy will definitely outlive them…Forever.
Review by Áine Byrne