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Jewish Journal

Haim play hometown gig. This reporter swoons.

by Ryan Torok

January 15, 2014 | 5:08 pm

Haim

Los Angeles trio Haim played a hometown concert for Los Angeles radio station KROQ on Jan. 15. The six-song performance on the KROQ Red Bull Sound Space near Culver City, CA was steamed live (video below). 

Made up entirely of songs from their debut album, “Days are Gone,” which was released in the United States last October, the set-list included “Falling;” “The Wire;” “Honey and I;” “Don’t Save Me;” “Forever,” “Let Me Go.”

The show was energetic. During “Falling,” the opening song on the album, bassist Este Haim picked up a pair of drumsticks and pounded away on a tom drum. Showing off her harmonizing skills, she stepped up to the microphone to sing back-up for her younger sister, lead guitarist and vocalist Danielle.

A trio of sisters, Este, 27, Danielle, 24, and Alana, 22 (rhythm guitar, keyboard), make up this succesful pop group, which blends folk, rock and R&B. The girls play their own instruments, perform original music. They grew up in the San Fernando Valley, playing in a family band with their Israeli-born father, Mordechai.

Onstage, with support from a backing duo on keyboard and drums, the three girls were all smiles on Wednesday, reveling in being back home after what they described as nearly two years on the road. The relentless touring makes sense for a band whose album reached the top of the charts in the U.K. and that has been tapped in an enviable spot for this year’s Coachella festival.

The album’s lead single, “The Wire,” featuring an irresistible pre-chorus, came second in the set. During one of the verses, Alana sang lead, much to the crowd’s delight.

There was a lot for the Los Angeles audience in the standing-room only venue to cheer about. Local spots name dropped by the girls during in-between song banter included Bay Cities Deli (Santa Monica), Ultra Zone (San Fernando Valley’s home for laser tag) and even a certain Jewish day school in Bel-Air, Calif. 

"Millikan, not Milken, not the Jewish private school,” said one of the girls, in response to a question during the pre-show Q-and-A about where they attended school growing up (Millikan Middle School is a charter school in Sherman Oaks).

Este and Alana handled the majority of the conversation between songs. Danielle, clad in leather jacket and tight, black jeans, proved to be more of the introvert of the three, keeping her chatter to a minimum.

By the way, Milken was just one of two Jewish references. The other was when Este was telling Stryker, the KROQ radio DJ, how excited she was to be playing for KROQ, since the girls were obsessed with the station when they were 12- and 13-years-old and on the “bar and bat mitzvah scene.”

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