Haim have announced a reissue of their debut album ‘Days Are Gone’ with the trio discussing their memories of the record with NME as well as talking about their headlining set at All Points East 2023.
This year marks the 10th anniversary of the band’s first record. As sisters, Este, Danielle and Alana Haim told NME, the occasion calls for a celebration.
“We worked our whole lives to put out our first record, So we thought, ‘It’s the 10-year anniversary! Why the fuck not’. We also never shy away from an excuse to celebrate,” said Este. “A decade feels like a milestone. It’s pretty crazy,” Danielle added.
Upon its release in 2013, ‘Days Are Gone’ had a major impact on Tumblr and made the rounds along with other LPs such as The 1975‘s self-titled, Lorde‘s ‘Pure Heroine’ and Lana Del Rey‘s ‘Born To Die’ and ‘Ultraviolence’ on the blogging site.
The album reached Number One on the UK charts and as well as Number Two on the Billboard Top Alternative Rock Albums and Top Rock Albums charts. It also landed the Number Six spot on the Billboard 200 chart.
Though the album garnered attention, the sisters never thought it would gain that kind of recognition. “We had zero expectations,” Este recalled.
“The crazy thing about ‘Days Are Gone’ is that the first thing that we ever came out with was the ‘Forever’ EP and we put that out on the internet without knowing how to promote things,” explained Alana.
She continued: “We didn’t know how to get music out there. The only thing that we knew was that we were super proud of what we had finally created after being a band for six years at that point. We had finally gotten a recording that we loved, and we were like, ‘Cool, we have this. What do you do with it?’ So we put it on the internet with absolutely no idea what was going to happen. And it completely changed our lives.”
Though it has been a decade since the release of their debut, the band said they found that the album still resonated with them but in a completely new way.
“I listen to it now, and some of the songs take on a different meaning,” said Este. “I also think, ‘Wow, we were going through some shit’ when these songs were written.”
The bassist continued to share the infamous Joni Mitchell story about how the song ‘Both Sides Now’ meant something completely different to Mitchell 40 years after she had originally written it.
“I think that a lot of songwriters feel that way,” Este said. “A lot of the songs we’ve written when we were in our twenties mean something different to us now that we are in our thirties. I don’t know if we are any wiser, though.”
As well as the meanings behind the songs, over the last decade, the trio’s sound has also evolved. “It’s funny because whenever I’ll hear it, there are some things where I’m like, ‘Wow, that sounds so homemade’,” Danielle said of listening back to ‘Days Are Gone’ now. “A lot of the sounds we recorded in GarageBand. There’s a really cool mix of just like really kind of shitty-sounding things, but I think it’s charming.”
“Young Haim, we didn’t know what we were doing, but we learned a lot,” Alana added before Este chipped in: “It was an adventure.”
Alana went on to reflect on the record and discussed the band’s growth over the years. With three albums out in the world and a fourth one in the works, she was reminded of their mindset at the time.
‘When I think about the first album, I’m like, ‘You know what, we didn’t know a lot, but we knew what sounds we loved, and we knew what we wanted in our heads’. It was just putting what was in our heads on to record. And now that we have the language, obviously, it’s easier,” she said.
She continued: “So now I’m like: ‘You know what, Young Haim? You did really figure it out.’ Even though it was really scary and it was really hard, and it took a long time, we figured it out. I am proud of Young Haim.”
Along with the reissue of their debut, Haim are set to headline All Points East as on Monday, August 28. The three bandmates shared their gratitude for their UK fans and told NME how every significant moment they have had as a band occurred while in London.
Alana recalled when the band signed their album deal at a restaurant across the road from Camden music venue Dingwalls, where they would perform later that night. “[It] was a huge deal,” she said. “I remember I screamed, ‘We’re signed!’ in the restaurant – there was no one [there], so I felt fine screaming.”
The sisters experienced another big moment at the venue later that night. “We played our show, and that was the first time that people were singing back the words to ‘Forever’,” Alana continued.
“We were really shocked. We stopped singing because we couldn’t believe it. The first time I ever went to the UK was when we got signed, so to have these songs you wrote your living room in the Valley, then travel all the way to London and have people know your lyrics was the craziest feeling.”
“The Brits have taste,” joked Este.
While speaking to NME, Alana recalled the time when, in 2012, the band opened up for Florence and The Machine at the O2 Arena in London and believed they would never sell out that venue themselves.
“I was like, ‘I love being a band, but I don’t think that we’ll ever get here,’ and then [in 2022] when we got the news that we sold out the O2 Arena, it was huge,” she explained. “Little 20, 21-year-old Alana would have never in her wildest dreams thought that we could sell out the O2 arena.
“So to play a festival for the people that we love the most, all we want is for everyone to have a good time, to dance and to party. We just want to play every song that they want to hear! They can yell out songs, and we’ll play it. We’re just so excited to play.”
Of what Haim love about British crowds, Este added: “Also, with UK audiences, there’s just no element of being self-conscious. That’s what we love about them. They just really go for it and they sing their hearts out, they dance, and sometimes you don’t get that everywhere.”
Before they return to the UK, the band will also be heading out on the road with Taylor Swift, serving as openers for the west coast leg of her ‘The Eras’ tour.
“We are just so excited,” Alana said. “We did the ‘1989’ tour with Taylor, and it was the best tour to be on and now we get to do it again. I mean, it’s a stadium tour! It’s crazy.”
The ‘Days Are Gone’ reissue is set for release on September 29 via Polydor Records and will be available in a variety of formats. You can pre-order the record here and find any remaining tickets for All Points East here.