It’s been two years since HAIM’s acclaimed record Women in Music Pt III. Since then, they have been touring and featured on the Taylor Swift track No Body No Crime off of her amazing record Evermore. Even though that was one of my favourite tracks off that record, I found myself wanting another HAIM record. Well, it’s not a new record, but we now have a new HAIM track to sink our teeth into.
Lost Track was a bit of an improv track made during a photo shoot with director Paul Thomas Anderson, who also directed the music video. It is unclear if this is more of a creative exercise for the band or a harbinger of a new record on the horizon. The band is a bit mum on that bit, but did say in an interview that the track is based off of a book Appointment in Samarra, which Paul talked about at the time.
Musically, the track opens with a music box / children’s toy piano vibe complete with hand claps. This has a bit of a 60s trippy folk vibe with the stripped back instrumentation and happy pop sensibility. It is a very light and breezy song that fills your lungs with fresh mountain air. I love its simplicity and how it allows the song to place the vocals front and centre.
In some ways, this is a song of contrasts. HAIM sings about “Laugh but I’m still cryin'” as the main character becomes more and more anxious in a social setting. The contrast here is how once can feel more numb and alone in the company of strangers than they do on their own. Moreover, the simple instrumental arrangement is in contrast to complex vocals and harmonies. The sisters come in and out of verses as their vocals occasionally come together in epic harmonies that only HAIM can produce. It is the contrast of vocal fragility on their own that comes together in powerful harmonies in the chorus. This track excels in its vocal acrobatics as the sisters sonically tumble over each other like a beautiful kaleidoscope.
Lost Track is a beautiful breath of fresh air within a year of massive hip hop, house and pop releases. HAIM’s simplicity complimented by their vocal excellence elevates this track from spur of the moment improvisation to a well crafted gem. I hope this is a sign of things to come and we have a fully realised HAIM record in 2023.
Listen to Lost Track