Quantcast
 Scott Creney

Haim – Days Are Gone (Columbia)

Haim – Days Are Gone (Columbia)
Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size Text Size Print This Page

By Scott Creney 

Whichever one of the Haim’s writes the lyrics is a goddamned genius. My favorite lyrical moments from this album, in no particular order:

Freckled thing, don’t fuck with the psych patients. I would like to threaten her sanity, her grade point average, her place in the world. I could buckle her floor.

The hook was attached to a branch which attached to a filament which was attached to a branch which turned the bird into a kite.

By the time the Slavic lady is done with my mouth I will be ready to bite the roofs off ranch houses and spit them on pedestrians.

Ouch, she said, but my scab looks like Florida. Ouch, but look what I found in the dirt.

I agree not to self-unmedicate, but then I cut those yellow moons in half.

I worry I broke your kneecaps when I cut you down.

A bloom of contaminates in the ocean is called a red tide. Before I knew better, I swam in one. The sea was a chowder the color of dried blood. I got out when I saw the fish, bobbing like croutons. This is the consistency and hue of the sky as I drive north, using my windshield wipers to clear falling ash. Singed animals come down from the hills and run alongside the freeway.

I’m kidding, of course. Haim didn’t write these. Like Bryan Adams, Haim have mastered the art of writing a song composed entirely of lyrics from other songs. It’s how they express themselves.

No, the lines above are a sample of random lines from a book that came out earlier in 2013. Bough Down by Karen Green is one of the most devastating, beautifully created works of art ever created. I literally get butterflies when I read it — tiny little flutterings of a panic attack welling up in my belly. Because of the art, the exquisite design, it costs a little bit more than your average book. I had to wait all summer to buy it, until I was sure I had the money. Having it now, I realize it would have been worth twice as much. You can buy it here:

http://www.amazon.com/Karen-Green-Bough-Down/dp/193822101X

(if this review introduces just one person to this book etc…)

But back to Haim, who are — in my world — the complete creative opposite of Bough Down. I know it’s an unfair comparison. But just because you get mad at a shit sandwich for not being peanut butter cookies, that doesn’t make it any less shit. And I want to make it clear: I’m not a hater; I just have high standards.

I have to give the band credit though. Normally folks like me have to write how this kind of music evokes the spirit of conservatism, how it mirrors the values of spineless fear, low expectations, etc. So kudos to Haim for demonstrating their political apathy, their who-gives-a-shit-about-the-world-beyond-the-balloon-of-my-ego-thankyouverymuch-ness, in broad public daylight mere days before their album comes out.

So if I seem a little annoyed at their empty-headedness, the way people who should know better see their lack of anything beyond pure pop emptiness (the word ‘pop’ used in a backhanded way — as if Beyonce, or Taylor Swift, or Lady Gaga, or even Katy fucking Perry didn’t have at least something in their songs) as some kind of asset, well like, why should I have to read inanities like, See, they’re great BECAUSE they’re empty. Some of you IPC morons started this with Oasis: well if the people like it, then it MUST have some merit. And look where it’s gotten you now. Shit, at least Noel stole an album-and-a-half’s worth of good melodies. And Liam tried to make his brother’s bullshit mean something, until he got too rich and lazy to be bothered.

Haim’s pleasure, limited as even its enthusiasts admit, is the empty pleasure of an endless series of twinkies eaten over the course of 45 minutes. Fine enough in the beginning, but eventually destined to sicken.

Hey, let’s be positive for a second. Everyone out there, I want you to remember that no matter how bad your day is going, you at least have the option of not listening to the new Haim album. Still probably going to catch a song or two if you’re not careful though.

And I know I’m not the target audience for Haim, but if that’s the case, how come I have to see/hear them all over the place? I haven’t gone looking for Haim. They’re everywhere this week. And this review is my response — something as predictable/repetitive/redundant/lazy as the music itself, as dull and predictable as the dumbly offended responses Haim fans are likely to write in the comments below this article. What a waste of everyone’s time this band is going to be.

But if you’re a young person out there, like 15 or under, I’m willing to cut you a little slack. Look, I don’t deny the pleasure you get from this music, but your ability to be moved by it says more about the depth/breadth of your emotions, the thrill of being alive, than it does about Haim. Given the right circumstances, even Rick Astley can move someone to tears. But what made it happen, what created that moment, was whatever was going on inside of the listener. Not Rick Astley.

Because Haim doesn’t make music that inspires and sparkles. The people who listen to Haim’s music — who need something to explain the mess of themselves back to them, in a way that makes some sense of the stupid fucked-up world they’ve inherited, or at least allows them to forget about it for a few minutes — those are the people who make Haim’s music sparkle, the incandescent sun that illuminates the band’s cold dead moon.

But if it wasn’t them, it’d just be somebody else. And take note: some adult in a building somewhere is convinced that this is the best you deserve, is all you’re capable of understanding. Just think about that.

However, if you’re someone over the age of 23 who professes to care about music and you buy this album, you should be ashamed of yourself. Grow the fuck up. Remaining a child all your life is nothing to be proud of.

Here it is if anyone wants to listen. Just know that all of you, all of us, deserve better than to endure the ubiquity of Haim.

53 Responses to Haim – Days Are Gone (Columbia)

  1. moOkie October 2, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    Slap my knee bones to the ground!

  2. Ben Green October 2, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    GROSS VOCALS

  3. Sarah October 2, 2013 at 9:28 pm

    This is less of a review more of a mental breakdown. You sound like a ranting baffoon Scott. If you have friends I suggest you get them to read this review, then look you in the eye and tell you what they think of it.

  4. woot October 2, 2013 at 9:33 pm

    geez is there anything you like that isn’t predictable “smart guy” garbage? might as well call you tj for fuck’s sake. read Gass or Mossman not the pale imitations you dumb motherfucker, maybe you’ll learn something. YOU, to say nothing of Haim, desperately need to.

  5. andy October 2, 2013 at 10:09 pm

    SO IF I CRY TO RICK ASSTLEY THEN THAT’S REALLY ME CRYING NOT RICK ASSTELY BUT IF RICK ASSTLEY HAD EMOTIONS THEN I WOULDN’T NEED TO HAVE ANY EMOTIONS BECAUSE RICK ASSTLEY COULD DO ALL THAT STUFF FOR ME. OR SOMETHING.

  6. RJC October 2, 2013 at 10:34 pm

    But if Rick Astley moves someone to tears then surely that is Pete Waterman’s doing, not Rick Astley’s?! ITS ALL SO CONFUSING!!!

  7. Steph October 2, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    Is Haim the marmite of the pop world. They just mildly bore me. Not enough to stir up hatred. Their winning quality is the bassist’s bass face. Best I’ve seen but not into 80s classic rock music.

  8. RJC October 2, 2013 at 11:25 pm

    This isn’t about Haim though is it?

  9. Tenbenson October 2, 2013 at 11:53 pm

    It’s always the fans of the shittest music that spit the most feathers when someone dares to criticise it.

  10. Caroline October 3, 2013 at 1:38 am

    You’re right, RJC. It’s about the slow, depressing creep of society and popular music towards vapid, substanceless mediocrity.

  11. Will October 3, 2013 at 2:19 am

    I don’t get the fuss over this review. The opening gambit is a bit…much imo, but there’s nothing sexist or out of order about this.

    Haim’s record was made with the endless budget of Columbia/Sony, they were put into the studio with high profile co writers and producers and they came out with something that sounds like a Shania Twain b-side or some 80s one hit wonder. No spark, nothing interesting…just cookie cutter nonsense with an incredibly high marketing budget. Cynical in that it is all geared up to satisfy people who are scared of the new. I don’t even hear ANY production flourishes in this which could mark it out.

    Manufactured pop doesn’t HAVE to be shit. All my beloved sixties girl groups, Spector stuff etc were manufactured, but by people who gave a shit, and had the talent to write and produce good music. This is not that.

  12. RJC October 3, 2013 at 2:33 am

    I found this to be an interesting exchange

    https://twitter.com/AndrewMaleMojo/status/385432851346255872

    What is it about this piece (and the others) that so riles the Great British music journalist?

    It might be helpful if some of the er, haterz came on here and joined the conversation as I don’t think Twitter is particularly suited to long form debate.

    Hmmm…

  13. Lee October 3, 2013 at 3:34 am

    Sarah – will do. I’ll tell him it’s an excellent review.

    Dunno about you guys, but I certainly believe I deserve better than Haim. Way to go, girls, for perpetuating the airhead, glamor-girl stereotype (that, secretly, I’m sure my mum wished I could have been) and exploiting an old pop formula that’s already been played to death. If I had to listen to a whole album of this, I might sound like a “ranting buffoon”, too (and a less articulate one, at that).

  14. RJC October 3, 2013 at 5:58 am

    Caroline – this is indeed about the slow, depressing creep of society and popular music towards vapid, substanceless mediocrity, but it is also about pointing the finger at those complicit in this creep.

  15. Wayne Walls October 3, 2013 at 7:10 am

    I would rather cut my ears off than listen to Haim

  16. Stevie M October 3, 2013 at 8:26 am

    This is an excellent review and see nothing sexist about it at all. Uptight pc Brits don’t like pop music or anything with “girls with guitars” getting dissed no matter how bland they are and cry SEXISM if you dare to go against their expert opinions. Check the xx or coldplay for an example of bland UK bands of recent years all hyped initially by the NME and middlebrow media outlets like The Guardian. Rather than get behind creative bands like The New Puritans they have to go for safe and bland music.

    What worries me with the state of critically adored rock and indie is that its so dull and watered down and SAFE which mean young rock fans might end up drifting to the awful actual misogynist sub-genre of rock -Heavy Metal than the once proud , intelligent bands in the rock genre. We need to save the kids from sweaty, spotty, sexless youths watching men in loincloths.
    Heavy Metal is the genre Dorian Lynskey , from that twitter exchange, espouses in the guardian and the quietus I think?

    Why does Dorien not have a go at the misogyny in heavy metal or the fact that 99% of fans of black metal (who are ALL white) are racists?

  17. Tamsin Chapman October 3, 2013 at 8:43 am

    I don’t understand why a gang of established Smug 4 Life journalists are so up in arms about a review by an unpaid critic who writes purely because he cares about music. *Everybody* knows Haim are terrible. And they’re Tories to boot. They sound like Wilson Phillips except without their one good song & interesting back story.

    I actually disagree that Haim make music aimed at young people – it’s patently aimed at middle-aged men.I also even disagree it’s pop music at all. It’s MOR. The only young people I can imagine liking them are members of the Young Conservatives who find the charts “a bit urban”.

    Pop music is about the now and the future. Beyonce makes great pop music. Kanye makes great pop music. Haim are retrograde, reactionary piffle. Music for people who are *satisfied* with themselves and their lives. Music for people who don’t like music.

    No wonder Tracey Thorn likes them – I love the Marine Girls but let’s face it, Everything But The Girl were MOR too. I also think Courtney Love is partly to blame for all this. She started the critical rehabilitation of Fleetwood Mac. Fleetwood Mac (who apparently Haim are supposed to sound like) are also tedious MOR bollocks. I’m sorry but they are.

    Music journalism used to be rockist (and that was shit), in theory it’s now supposed to be poptimist. It would be great if that were so – I live for pop music. But it bloody isn’t, it’s dominated by the middle-aged and the middle-of-the-road. Today, the Tories announced that if they win the next election they’ll strip all welfare benefits from the under 25s, leaving those young people abandoned or abused by their families to die on the streets. And a music review that you disagree with is what you choose to get angry about is it Dorian Lynskey? Fuck the gerontocracy

  18. Daz October 3, 2013 at 9:04 am

    I fail to see how people have interpreted this review as sexist.

    Haim sound like Hanson for a new generation.

    What actually makes me curious is why one of the band members stands up behind a couch for an interview while David Cameron and another guest sit on a couch. WHY?

  19. RJC October 3, 2013 at 9:32 am

    Tasmin Chapman is correct – Haim do not make music aimed at young people. I don’t know who they make their music for. Perhaps, in time-honoured tradition Haim ‘just make music for themselves and if anyone else likes it that’s a bonus’.

    This is less about who Haim make their music for, but rather who their music is marketed at. Their music is marketed at middle aged men. Arguably middle aged white men.

    “And I know I’m not the target audience for Haim, but if that’s the case, how come I have to see/hear them all over the place? I haven’t gone looking for Haim. They’re everywhere this week. And this review is my response…”

    This is the straw man. If Creney weren’t the target audience for Haim then how is it he sees them everywhere he looks? He is the target audience. Marketing has just attempted to become more sophisticated.

    Before I logged on here, I checked my emails. Oh look, there’s one from Amazon telling me that I might be interested in the new Haim album. I am a middle aged white male.

  20. Jodi October 3, 2013 at 9:37 am

    Even as a frothing, rabid feminist, I can’t see anything sexist about this review. I can’t even really spot any direct references to gender at all (apart from in the purely descriptive pronoun sense).

    That being said, I don’t think this is up to your usual standards, Scott. It makes you sound like a bitter old man. If you’re going to hate the music, at least spend more time talking about the music. This review reads like you listened to three songs one time and decided that they’re everything that’s wrong with The Youth Today.

    Also fuck you right in the ass Stevie M, when you make statements like “…the fact that 99% of fans of black metal (who are ALL white) are racists…” you are actively damaging our side of the argument with your fucking rampant stupidity.

  21. Suzie2999 October 3, 2013 at 9:38 am

    A heated debate about Haim? Really?

  22. RJC October 3, 2013 at 9:53 am

    Argh. This isn’t about Haim.

  23. Lucy Cage October 3, 2013 at 10:04 am

    I’ve been puzzling over the extraordinarily rabid response to this review all day; it seems so uncontroversial, dissing Haim for being bland, for not being good enough… why is that so hard to swallow? Most odd.

    As far as I can tell though, the sexism critique made on Twitter was a poor reading of the review through the eyes of a smarting Haim fan who assumed that because Scott was suggesting that their pop is not good enough (and also that much mass-appeal pop is reflective more of the listener’s subjective experience rather than innate genius) he was:

    a. a Hater of Pop in general
    b. making the fairly standard gendered critique wherein pop & its fandom is seen as female (and therefore lesser, dismissable, manufactured) and is set against high culture (worthy, complex, auteured).

    To this crude view (even when made by white, middle-class, middle-aged, male writers with media-establishment platforms) pretty much any critique of female-produced pop = misogyny.
    The fact that Scott’s review is not making that argument in the slightest doesn’t seem to have discouraged them in banging it out over and over.

    If there is any more substance to the sexism accusation than this, I would like to hear it.

  24. RJC October 3, 2013 at 10:21 am

    Something is happening here,
    But you don’t know what it is
    Do you, Mr Lynskey?

  25. UnContainuhDrivuh October 3, 2013 at 10:53 am

    the old serious journos who are defending haim are probably just dudes who want to sleep with the band. i know that’s being a bit direct, but really that’s probably the case.

  26. Dorian Lynskey October 3, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    Hello

    Scott wrote a provocative, divisive review and got strong reactions both for and against. Job done, surely? I doubt he’s upset that I hate it. He’s probably pleased.

    Stevie – Sadly heavy metal is the one genre I’ve never been able to get into and I don’t write for the Quietus. You must be thinking of someone else. Oh, and I’ve given These New Puritans two five-star reviews.

    Tamsin – I “choose to get angry” about a bunch of stuff, including the current government, and I write about it regularly, but you don’t seem to know anything about me beyond a single tweet (and why should you?) so I guess that’s not apparent.

    Lucy – That’s the gist, although I think “misogyny” would be going too far. Traditionally reviews that patronise young pop listeners (as in the Astley paragraph) do have sexist undertones and there’s nothing here to make me think otherwise because Scott doesn’t critically engage with the music on any level. You call it a “poor reading”. Fine. Different interpretations are allowed. Shame you had to personalise it though.

    Bottom line: I hated this review. I don’t hate the writer, I don’t hate the website. I hated this review. Some people hate my reviews. Big deal.

  27. RJC October 3, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    People really shouldn’t go throwing around accusations of sexism unless they’re totally prepared to defend such slurs. Claiming “oh, but its just my opinion” doesn’t fucking cut it.

    Why don’t those responsible for asserting such (arguably slanderous) allegations come on here to defend themselves instead of hiding in plain sight over on Twitter.

    Come on lads, fair’s fair.

  28. Chester Whelks October 3, 2013 at 9:02 pm

    I think the ‘sexism’ jibe was derived from as simple a thing as Scott starting off the article by saying:

    “This is a WOMAN who can write, and this is a WOMAN who can’t write.”

  29. RJC October 3, 2013 at 9:37 pm

    Oops, seems that thing I said asking people to come on here to defend themselves crossed in the ether with Dorian Lynskey’s response. Now I look stupid (but then I’m well used to that).

    I think that people have a certain duty of care when tweeting accusations of sexism to over 15,000 followers. Its probably worth noting that Dorian Lynskey didn’t accuse Scott Creney of being stupid, sexist and reactionary rather that accusation was levelled at his review. I still can’t see it myself, but there you go. Everything is open to personal interpretation. How much someone’s personal interpretation of something reflects their own personal opinions I couldn’t say.

  30. Lucy Cage October 3, 2013 at 10:35 pm

    Dorian: I appreciate you coming here to both face your critics and elucidate your position. Kudos for that. I do take your point that you were hating the review not the reviewer although that is not the line that the subsequent Twitter conversations held to.

    I personalised it because those details seemed relevant to my interpretation of the situation; I hope you didn’t think there was anything in what I said as offensive as the personal insults coming Scott’s way from Twitter and Facebook but maybe I should have left out the context.

    I don’t know where the line would be drawn between “sexism” and “misogyny”; is one not the manifestation of the other? The genderisation of fandom (particularly of mass culture) is one of my pet subjects so I think if I’d caught a whiff of it from Scott’s review I’d have been agreeing with you; I really do think you are assuming a position he is not actually taking just because that is a “traditional” position.

    And I honestly don’t see anything patronising or sexist in his suggestion that pop fans who delight in what might appear to be trashy pop hits are lighting up the music with their own youthful emotions, with their own “incandescent sun”. (Unless you’d like to explain the genius behind “Never Gonna Give You Up”?!) I don’t completely agree with this assertion but I don’t think it’s particularly patronising either.

  31. Dorian Lynskey October 3, 2013 at 11:17 pm

    Well I didn’t personally insult Scott on Twitter and I said nothing on Facebook so when I get slagged off for being a middle-aged man – obviously the worst thing in the world and therefore unworthy of having any opinions regarding sexism – I’m naturally going to wonder why it’s been made personal. But it’s no big deal.

    I do detect sexist undercurrents, for reasons already addressed, but wish I hadn’t foregrounded that when my bigger objection is simply that the review is awful: an inept, incoherent rant that pays more attention to a fleeting encounter with David Cameron on TV than it does to the actual music. The condescending part is assuming that people only like Haim because they don’t know any better. “Look, I don’t deny the pleasure you get from this music, but your ability to be moved by it says more about the depth/breadth of your emotions, the thrill of being alive, than it does about Haim.” That’s patronising crap. And the “c’mon kids” rhetoric that assumes this is all down to horrible adults who think this is “the best you deserve” is ridiculous. There are a lot of bands out there and kids are smart enough to find them. We’re no longer living in an age where it’s the Radio 1 playlist or nothing.

    I have one principle when it comes to music criticism: don’t assume that someone who loves a record you hate is a gullible, easily manipulated idiot who doesn’t understand real music like you do. Because that’s arrogant, condescending and wrong. And that’s all I have to add really.

  32. Lucy Cage October 3, 2013 at 11:50 pm

    “I have one principle when it comes to music criticism: don’t assume that someone who loves a record you hate is a gullible, easily manipulated idiot who doesn’t understand real music like you do. Because that’s arrogant, condescending and wrong. And that’s all I have to add really.”

    Yeah, I’m mostly with you on that despite the fact that making that very assumption can lead to all kinds of wonderful, passionate (if often offensive/provoking) writing. I’d rather see that kind of piece than the fence-sitting, desperate-not-to-offend-anyone, measured stuff sometimes.

    (PS I was not slagging you off for what you are, just noting it; while context matters to some extent, it is obviously not the whole story but I do think you leapt to conclusions about Scott’s position based on your own standpoint. And for what it’s worth I agree with Tamsin about Haim’s target audience.)

  33. Derek Robertson October 4, 2013 at 12:02 am

    It’s a shame that the is it/isn’t it sexist furore has taken away one of the most interesting points that Scott raises, and something that really struck a chord with me. Namely:

    “And take note: some adult in a building somewhere is convinced that this is the best you deserve, is all you’re capable of understanding. Just think about that.”

    I personally don’t like Haim’s music – I think it’s dull, unoriginal, and lazy – but I do think it’s interesting that they seem to have been annointed as “The Band That Shall Not Fail”. For whatever reason (money invested in them?) it strikes me that the mainstream press has been falling over themselves to love this band since they won the BBC Sound Of… in January. It’s great that some people like them, but there has been precious little actual critical writing about them beyond the “They Are Great/I Love ‘Em” fare, and their defenders are unusually quick to swarm all over anyone who dares disagree with the default fawning position (this controversy being a prime example).

    Dorian, the only thing I would disagree with in your response is where you say: “We’re no longer living in an age where it’s the Radio 1 playlist or nothing.” Surely you of all people should know just how influential they still are as gatekeepers, and introducing music to the wider population (which then leads to more sales, licensing deals, recognition etc). The fact that Haim, as bland and derivative as they are, have been put on such a high pedestal is interesting, and I think Scott is right in questioning why that is when so much other original, exciting music gets totally ignored at their expense.

  34. Wallace Wylie October 4, 2013 at 12:36 am

    I think my main problem is with the fact that a writer with over 15 thousand twitter followers who writes for The Guardian decides to casually throw out the word ‘sexism’ but then doesn’t have anything to back it up other than saying they detected it. If someone were to accuse Dorian of racism because he criticised Kanye West and detected a racist tone to his articles, given the fact that he is a white male trying to tell a black male how to behave and how better to express himself, then I’m sure Dorian would take offence. If he was then met with a fuzzy ‘I detected it but it isn’t science’ line, and then told that he was looking for a reaction so got what he was looking for, I’m sure Dorian would be livid, especially if this accusation was made to over 15 thousand people. It’s fine though. No big deal. Scott got what he was looking for. It’s fucking bullshit, and to then turn around and say “Well there were loads of other parts about the review I didn’t like” is pathetic. You used the word ‘sexism’ as a short cut to critical thinking and when called on it you had nothing.

  35. Wallace Wylie October 4, 2013 at 12:37 am

  36. RJC October 4, 2013 at 3:55 am

    Take a look at the Haim album sleeve. Now take a look at the Body/Head album sleeve. Is it a stretch to claim that one is more sexist than the other? I don’t think so.

    I wonder how much input Haim themselves had into what photo appeared on the cover of their album? My guess would be not much. This has nothing to do with their gender, and more to do with the machinations of major record companies. I suspect (and I’m happy to be proven wrong if anybody knows different) this album sleeve was chosen by a combination of the art department and the marketing department at Sony/Columbia. Before being signed off by the CEO or whoever. I wonder what sort of people they are?

    There’s a heck of a lot of money riding on this band. They cannot fail. Dissent is not an option.

  37. right of reply October 4, 2013 at 9:52 am

    From the Haim thread: Rockist Agonistes.

    http://www.collapseboard.com/reviews/albums-reviews/haim-days-are-gone-columbia/

    ― Deafening silence (DL), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 12:04 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Like Bryan Adams, Haim have mastered the art of writing a song composed entirely of lyrics from other songs.

    T.S. Eliot did this too, you think you’re better than T.S. Eliot do you mister crappy pop music critic?

    ― how do i shot cwmbran? (Noodle Vague), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 12:06 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    When I posted it on the haim thread I hadn’t realised it was by the same guy who did http://www.collapseboard.com/blogs/scott-creney/an-immodest-proposal

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 12:08 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Overcoming the Haim vs Savages critical divide by shitting on both and congratulating himself for it.

    ― Deafening silence (DL), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 12:09 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    And it’s not like I have a vendetta against any of your labels. I wrote very nice things about the recent Cat Power album. Same with Yo La Tengo and Fucked Up. Yeah, I made fun of Fleet Foxes and Stephen Malkmus, but not enough to ruin their careers or hurt your labels. And let’s just talk about the fucking emotional memoir I wrote for last year’s Interpol reissue. There was so much soul in that review that Collapse Board’s Mike Turner, a lifelong Interpol hater, was forced to reassess the band after reading my review, arriving at the conclusion that the record “actually isn’t that bad”.

    As a writer, I am nothing if not persuasive.

    ― the objections to Drake from non-REAL HIPHOP people (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 12:12 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Willing to bet that a disproportionate amount of the worst music writing ever is first person.

    ― Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 12:59 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    It seems I have angered the Collapseboard massive on Twitter.

    ― Deafening silence (DL), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 1:18 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    No, the lines above are a sample of random lines from a book that came out earlier in 2013. Bough Down by Karen Green is one of the most devastating, beautifully created works of art ever created. I literally get butterflies when I read it — tiny little flutterings of a panic attack welling up in my belly. Because of the art, the exquisite design, it costs a little bit more than your average book. I had to wait all summer to buy it, until I was sure I had the money. Having it now, I realize it would have been worth twice as much.
    I can’t believe he got that far into that paragraph without writing, “You probably haven’t heard about it.”

    ― My question is primarily riparian (Phil D.), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 1:27 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Couldn’t read that shit at all but I am glad I scrolled down to read Doran’s comment at the end.

    ― i’ll be your mraz (NickB), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 1:42 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I literally get butterflies when I read it
    Presumably involves a trip to the butterfly shop?

    ― Neil S, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 1:50 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    DL im sure being called a “dick” by everett true is a badge of honour

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 2:03 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I literally get butterflies when I read it

    ― Addison Doug (Matt #2), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 2:08 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    He stopped Savages dead in their tracks? Someone all to tell the people who keep buying tickets to see them.

    ― Unsettled defender (ithappens), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 4:13 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    He’s a one-man truth machine.

    ― Pingu Unchained (dog latin), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 4:14 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    lol at “(if this review introduces just one person to this book etc…)” because that review just made me want to check out Haim who I haven’t heard before but I now like.

    ― wk, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 5:31 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Look, I don’t deny the pleasure you get from this music, but your ability to be moved by it says more about the depth/breadth of your emotions, the thrill of being alive, than it does about Haim.

    ― Deafening silence (DL), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 5:40 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    AKA: If you are shallow/young it doesn’t take much (intellectually) for you to be moved.

    ― Evan, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 5:59 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    unsurprisingly for a guy who appears to love the sound of his own typing, he seems unable to process any aspect of the music apart from the lyrics.

    ― wk, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 6:27 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I haven’t read the piece, but if it said “Haim suck and everyone who likes them is a fucking idiot who should be murdered”, it’s spot on.

    ― emil.y, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 6:28 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    >:|

    ― Johnny Fever, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 6:31 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    haha

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 6:34 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Heh. wk, as someone who adores the fuck out of this album, I’d be the first to tell you the lyrics are merely serviceable, but fine as such.

    ― The Reverend, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 6:48 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I always suspected emil.y was mr agreeabl.e

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 7:19 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    skimming the article I missed the part where Bough Down was a book so I threw it into youtube and the first hit was one of those pronunciation guide videos. clearly the real explanation is that this guy is horse_ebooks

    ― katherine, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 9:44 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    He is in a band called Tunabunny.

    ― how’s life, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 10:10 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    He is in a fucking excellent band called Tunabunny, yes.

    ― emil.y, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 10:17 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    god I just wrote a post and then deleted it

    ― THE SONIC UNREGULATED ELECTRIC CATFISH (imago), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 10:29 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I just listened to a couple of HAIM songs. I’ll hold my tongue and just quietly OTM emil.y.

    ― THE SONIC UNREGULATED ELECTRIC CATFISH (imago), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 10:29 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I like Tunabunny and Haim. 🙁

    ― polyphonic, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 10:31 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    rapture about the memoir of DFW’s ex seems exactly right for the middlebrow vibes going on in that prose, frankly

    ― the tune was space, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 10:35 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    wait, this guy who doesn’t hear anything good in Haim makes tuneless, rhythmically challenged music? that’s a shock.

    ― wk, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 10:52 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    haw haw haw!

    ― THE SONIC UNREGULATED ELECTRIC CATFISH (imago), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 10:54 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    *smarmy chuckle, places hands on gut*

    ― THE SONIC UNREGULATED ELECTRIC CATFISH (imago), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 10:55 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Bloke who plays in lumpen indie band tries to add to his own infamy/success by saying pop music is shite shocker.

    ― Damo Suzuki’s Parrot, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 11:40 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    lj is in a band called Tunabunny?

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 11:42 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    know some ppl that really rep for Tunabunny. not expecting them to care about the world’s worst music writer being in the band tbf

    ― Dance kings intent on making us laugh and groove at the same time (DJ Mencap), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 11:42 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    i just looked at the comments on collapseboard and DL isnt too popular!

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 11:43 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I like Tunabunny and Haim. 🙁

    ― polyphonic, Wednesday, October 2, 2013 10:31 PM (1 hour ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    ― the cat equivalent of love handles (bends), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 11:44 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I’ve only listened to Tunabunny for the first time tonight, and it’s 100% due to the Haim review being linked to in this thread, so if DS’s P is correct this strategy is working

    ― the cat equivalent of love handles (bends), Wednesday, October 2, 2013 11:47 PM (2 days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Heavy Metal is the genre Dorian Lynskey , from that twitter exchange, espouses in the guardian and the quietus I think?

    Why does Dorien not have a go at the misogyny in heavy metal or the fact that 99% of fans of black metal (who are ALL white) are racists?

    ― Dance kings intent on making us laugh and groove at the same time (DJ Mencap), Thursday, October 3, 2013 12:22 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Pretty terrible writer & it’s embarrassing to witness the gap between what he is aiming for and what he achieves BUT I think DL’s sexism accusation (“I find all kneejerk loathing of pop inherently sexist and reactionary”) partly rests on a misreading of

    So if I seem a little annoyed at their empty-headedness, the way people who should know better see their lack of anything beyond pure pop emptiness (the word ‘pop’ used in a backhanded way — as if Beyonce, or Taylor Swift, or Lady Gaga, or even Katy fucking Perry didn’t have at least something in their songs) as some kind of asset, well like, why should I have to read inanities like, See, they’re great BECAUSE they’re empty
    which is a terrible sentence but does seem to be in favour of pop – at least some “non-empty” kind of pop – and against people who celebrate pop as “emptiness” i.e. he is offended by “the word ‘pop’… used in a backhanded way” rather than using it in a backhanded way himself.

    I get the patronising of youth and the Rick Astley stuff – though of all briefly successful pop fellas Astley surely had the fewest young female fans. If anything, he just signifies pop as punishment i.e. rickrolling.

    ― Eyeball Kicks, Thursday, October 3, 2013 12:23 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    26 Responses to “Haim – Days Are Gone (Columbia)”
    moOkie says:
    October 2, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    Slap my knee bones to the ground!

    Ben Green says:
    October 2, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    GROSS VOCALS
    Sarah says:
    October 2, 2013 at 9:28 pm

    This is less of a review more of a mental breakdown. You sound like a ranting baffoon Scott. If you have friends I suggest you get them to read this review, then look you in the eye and tell you what they think of it.

    woot says:
    October 2, 2013 at 9:33 pm

    geez is there anything you like that isn’t predictable “smart guy” garbage? might as well call you tj for fuck’s sake. read Gass or Mossman not the pale imitations you dumb motherfucker, maybe you’ll learn something. YOU, to say nothing of Haim, desperately need to.

    andy says:
    October 2, 2013 at 10:09 pm

    SO IF I CRY TO RICK ASSTLEY THEN THAT’S REALLY ME CRYING NOT RICK ASSTELY BUT IF RICK ASSTLEY HAD EMOTIONS THEN I WOULDN’T NEED TO HAVE ANY EMOTIONS BECAUSE RICK ASSTLEY COULD DO ALL THAT STUFF FOR ME. OR SOMETHING.

    RJC says:
    October 2, 2013 at 10:34 pm

    But if Rick Astley moves someone to tears then surely that is Pete Waterman’s doing, not Rick Astley’s?! ITS ALL SO CONFUSING!!!
    Steph says:
    October 2, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    Is Haim the marmite of the pop world. They just mildly bore me. Not enough to stir up hatred. Their winning quality is the bassist’s bass face. Best I’ve seen but not into 80s classic rock music.

    RJC says:
    October 2, 2013 at 11:25 pm

    This isn’t about Haim though is it?

    Tenbenson says:
    October 2, 2013 at 11:53 pm

    It’s always the fans of the shittest music that spit the most feathers when someone dares to criticise it.

    Caroline says:
    October 3, 2013 at 1:38 am

    You’re right, RJC. It’s about the slow, depressing creep of society and popular music towards vapid, substanceless mediocrity.

    Will says:
    October 3, 2013 at 2:19 am

    I don’t get the fuss over this review. The opening gambit is a bit…much imo, but there’s nothing sexist or out of order about this.

    Haim’s record was made with the endless budget of Columbia/Sony, they were put into the studio with high profile co writers and producers and they came out with something that sounds like a Shania Twain b-side or some 80s one hit wonder. No spark, nothing interesting…just cookie cutter nonsense with an incredibly high marketing budget. Cynical in that it is all geared up to satisfy people who are scared of the new. I don’t even hear ANY production flourishes in this which could mark it out.

    Manufactured pop doesn’t HAVE to be shit. All my beloved sixties girl groups, Spector stuff etc were manufactured, but by people who gave a shit, and had the talent to write and produce good music. This is not that.

    RJC says:
    October 3, 2013 at 2:33 am

    I found this to be an interesting exchange

    https://twitter.com/AndrewMaleMojo/status/385432851346255872

    What is it about this piece (and the others) that so riles the Great British music journalist?

    It might be helpful if some of the er, haterz came on here and joined the conversation as I don’t think Twitter is particularly suited to long form debate.

    Hmmm…

    Lee says:
    October 3, 2013 at 3:34 am

    Sarah – will do. I’ll tell him it’s an excellent review.

    Dunno about you guys, but I certainly believe I deserve better than Haim. Way to go, girls, for perpetuating the airhead, glamor-girl stereotype (that, secretly, I’m sure my mum wished I could have been) and exploiting an old pop formula that’s already been played to death. If I had to listen to a whole album of this, I might sound like a “ranting buffoon”, too (and a less articulate one, at that).

    Erika Meyer says:
    October 3, 2013 at 4:20 am

    Dorian Lynskey (in the twitter debate referenced above) referred to this review as “sexist” (also I think “stupid” and “reactionary”). When Wallace asked him to make an evidence-based defense of his accusation of sexism, he refused.

    I’m not saying I agree with Scott that being childlike is a bad thing… even if too much pop music is too childlike too often… But I’ve never noticed Scott being in the slightest bit sexist in any of his reviews.

    AFA their music… it seems like a “thing” now… new music that sounds like old music. In particular, the music we hated in the 1980s. THIS is how our children annoy us now.

    My favorite thing about the review is of course the part of the review that was not about Haim, but about writer Karen Green.

    So I think the pertinent question here is: how does Karen Green look in hot pants?

    RJC says:
    October 3, 2013 at 5:58 am

    Caroline – this is indeed about the slow, depressing creep of society and popular music towards vapid, substanceless mediocrity, but it is also about pointing the finger at those complicit in this creep.

    Wayne Walls says:
    October 3, 2013 at 7:10 am

    I would rather cut my ears off than listen to Haim

    Stevie M says:
    October 3, 2013 at 8:26 am

    This is an excellent review and see nothing sexist about it at all. Uptight pc Brits don’t like pop music or anything with “girls with guitars” getting dissed no matter how bland they are and cry SEXISM if you dare to go against their expert opinions. Check the xx or coldplay for an example of bland UK bands of recent years all hyped initially by the NME and middlebrow media outlets like The Guardian. Rather than get behind creative bands like The New Puritans they have to go for safe and bland music.

    What worries me with the state of critically adored rock and indie is that its so dull and watered down and SAFE which mean young rock fans might end up drifting to the awful actual misogynist sub-genre of rock -Heavy Metal than the once proud , intelligent bands in the rock genre. We need to save the kids from sweaty, spotty, sexless youths watching men in loincloths.
    Heavy Metal is the genre Dorian Lynskey , from that twitter exchange, espouses in the guardian and the quietus I think?

    Why does Dorien not have a go at the misogyny in heavy metal or the fact that 99% of fans of black metal (who are ALL white) are racists?

    Tamsin Chapman says:
    October 3, 2013 at 8:43 am

    I don’t understand why a gang of established Smug 4 Life journalists are so up in arms about a review by an unpaid critic who writes purely because he cares about music. *Everybody* knows Haim are terrible. And they’re Tories to boot. They sound like Wilson Phillips except without their one good song & interesting back story.

    I actually disagree that Haim make music aimed at young people – it’s patently aimed at middle-aged men.I also even disagree it’s pop music at all. It’s MOR. The only young people I can imagine liking them are members of the Young Conservatives who find the charts “a bit urban”.

    Pop music is about the now and the future. Beyonce makes great pop music. Kanye makes great pop music. Haim are retrograde, reactionary piffle. Music for people who are *satisfied* with themselves and their lives. Music for people who don’t like music.

    No wonder Tracey Thorn likes them – I love the Marine Girls but let’s face it, Everything But The Girl were MOR too. I also think Courtney Love is partly to blame for all this. She started the critical rehabilitation of Fleetwood Mac. Fleetwood Mac (who apparently Haim are supposed to sound like) are also tedious MOR bollocks. I’m sorry but they are.

    Music journalism used to be rockist (and that was shit), in theory it’s now supposed to be poptimist. It would be great if that were so – I live for pop music. But it bloody isn’t, it’s dominated by the middle-aged and the middle-of-the-road. Today, the Tories announced that if they win the next election they’ll strip all welfare benefits from the under 25s, leaving those young people abandoned or abused by their families to die on the streets. And a music review that you disagree with is what you choose to get angry about is it Dorian Lynskey? Fuck the gerontocracy

    Daz says:
    October 3, 2013 at 9:04 am

    I fail to see how people have interpreted this review as sexist.

    Haim sound like Hanson for a new generation.

    What actually makes me curious is why one of the band members stands up behind a couch for an interview while David Cameron and another guest sit on a couch. WHY?

    RJC says:
    October 3, 2013 at 9:32 am

    Tasmin Chapman is correct – Haim do not make music aimed at young people. I don’t know who they make their music for. Perhaps, in time-honoured tradition Haim ‘just make music for themselves and if anyone else likes it that’s a bonus’.

    This is less about who Haim make their music for, but rather who their music is marketed at. Their music is marketed at middle aged men. Arguably middle aged white men.

    “And I know I’m not the target audience for Haim, but if that’s the case, how come I have to see/hear them all over the place? I haven’t gone looking for Haim. They’re everywhere this week. And this review is my response…”

    This is the straw man. If Creney weren’t the target audience for Haim then how is it he sees them everywhere he looks? He is the target audience. Marketing has just attempted to become more sophisticated.

    Before I logged on here, I checked my emails. Oh look, there’s one from Amazon telling me that I might be interested in the new Haim album. I am a middle aged white male.
    Jodi says:
    October 3, 2013 at 9:37 am

    Even as a frothing, rabid feminist, I can’t see anything sexist about this review. I can’t even really spot any direct references to gender at all (apart from in the purely descriptive pronoun sense).

    That being said, I don’t think this is up to your usual standards, Scott. It makes you sound like a bitter old man. If you’re going to hate the music, at least spend more time talking about the music. This review reads like you listened to three songs one time and decided that they’re everything that’s wrong with The Youth Today.

    Also fuck you right in the ass Stevie M, when you make statements like “…the fact that 99% of fans of black metal (who are ALL white) are racists…” you are actively damaging our side of the argument with your fucking rampant stupidity.

    Suzie2999 says:
    October 3, 2013 at 9:38 am

    A heated debate about Haim? Really?

    RJC says:
    October 3, 2013 at 9:53 am

    Argh. This isn’t about Haim.

    Lucy Cage says:
    October 3, 2013 at 10:04 am

    I’ve been puzzling over the extraordinarily rabid response to this review all day; it seems so uncontroversial, dissing Haim for being bland, for not being good enough… why is that so hard to swallow? Most odd.

    As far as I can tell though, the sexism critique made on Twitter was a poor reading of the review through the eyes of a smarting Haim fan who assumed that because Scott was suggesting that their pop is not good enough (and also that much mass-appeal pop is reflective more of the listener’s subjective experience rather than innate genius) he was:

    a. a Hater of Pop in general
    b. making the fairly standard gendered critique wherein pop & its fandom is seen as female (and therefore lesser, dismissable, manufactured) and is set against high culture (worthy, complex, auteured).

    To this crude view (even when made by white, middle-class, middle-aged, male writers with media-establishment platforms) pretty much any critique of female-produced pop = misogyny.
    The fact that Scott’s review is not making that argument in the slightest doesn’t seem to have discouraged them in banging it out over and over.

    If there is any more substance to the sexism accusation than this, I would like to hear it.

    RJC says:
    October 3, 2013 at 10:21 am

    Something is happening here,
    But you don’t know what it is
    Do you, Mr Lynskey?

    UnContainuhDrivuh says:
    October 3, 2013 at 10:53 am

    the old serious journos who are defending haim are probably just dudes who want to sleep with the band. i know that’s being a bit direct, but really that’s probably the case.

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Thursday, October 3, 2013 2:06 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    middlebrow media outlets like The Guardian

    ― the cat equivalent of love handles (bends), Thursday, October 3, 2013 2:14 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    which one of you lot is stevie m? Im not rising to the bait!

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Thursday, October 3, 2013 2:19 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    No wonder Tracey Thorn likes them – I love the Marine Girls but let’s face it, Everything But The Girl were MOR too. I also think Courtney Love is partly to blame for all this. She started the critical rehabilitation of Fleetwood Mac. Fleetwood Mac (who apparently Haim are supposed to sound like) are also tedious MOR bollocks. I’m sorry but they are.

    ― the objections to Drake from non-REAL HIPHOP people (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, October 3, 2013 2:24 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    The two non-musicinternetppl friends I have who share my Haim obsession are both early-20s black lesbians, or, apparently, middle aged white men.

    ― The Reverend, Thursday, October 3, 2013 2:40 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I’m sorry but they are.

    Lol at poster Tamsin Chapman’s unearned smugness. “I’m sorry to have to tell you the truth, but here you go, free of charge”.

    ― Neanderthal, Thursday, October 3, 2013 2:44 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    No winners on that thread

    ― smangerz (Whiney G. Weingarten), Thursday, October 3, 2013 3:01 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    xp Heavy metal is pretty much the only genre I can’t get into and I don’t write for the Quietus but otherwise that comment is otm.

    Impressed such a shitty review has so many fans though. He must be touching a chord with somebody.

    ― Deafening silence (DL), Thursday, October 3, 2013 9:58 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I suspect Scott Creney himself is smart enough to know that if you write a provocative review and you provoke strong reactions then it’s job done and not something to wail about.

    ― Deafening silence (DL), Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:02 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    It just makes me wonder why I bother spending months researching and writing well thought out pieces for my blog to minimal response, since I should obviously stamp my feet, stick my tongue out and sod facts and feelings to get attention because that’s what people on the internet seem to want.

    ― Here he is with the classic “Poème Électronique.” Good track (Marcello Carlin), Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:10 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    The only thing people want is soundbites and controversy. See also: politics, news, etc.

    ― StanM, Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:24 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Yes I know (sighs) – all people want is A Good Story.

    ― Here he is with the classic “Poème Électronique.” Good track (Marcello Carlin), Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:29 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Yes it’s depressing. Nice to see Bob Stanley mention TPL on the Guardian site today though.

    ― Deafening silence (DL), Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:38 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    And indeed he also mentions me (and Lena) in his Yeah Yeah Yeah book. Gladdens the heart, I must say.

    ― Here he is with the classic “Poème Électronique.” Good track (Marcello Carlin), Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:44 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Someone’s confusing DL with Doran.

    My problem with the review is that half of it is a book review and the other half is just ‘LOL Haim suck and you suck and PS I am great’ with no actual proof to back any of these three points up.

    ― Pingu Unchained (dog latin), Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:58 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I have no hair. Doran has all the hair.

    ― Deafening silence (DL), Thursday, October 3, 2013 11:08 AM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    is this the thread where we all agree that the horrible creney piece is horrible? i’m sorry but it is.

    did make me want to listen to haim though.

    ― pervilege as a meme (contenderizer), Thursday, October 3, 2013 3:29 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    hmmm wait a min DL

    xp Heavy metal is pretty much the only genre I can’t get into and I don’t write for the Quietus but otherwise that comment is otm.
    Stevie M says:
    October 3, 2013 at 8:26 am
    This is an excellent review and see nothing sexist about it at all. Uptight pc Brits don’t like pop music or anything with “girls with guitars” getting dissed no matter how bland they are and cry SEXISM if you dare to go against their expert opinions. Check the xx or coldplay for an example of bland UK bands of recent years all hyped initially by the NME and middlebrow media outlets like The Guardian. Rather than get behind creative bands like The New Puritans they have to go for safe and bland music.

    What worries me with the state of critically adored rock and indie is that its so dull and watered down and SAFE which mean young rock fans might end up drifting to the awful actual misogynist sub-genre of rock -Heavy Metal than the once proud , intelligent bands in the rock genre. We need to save the kids from sweaty, spotty, sexless youths watching men in loincloths.
    Heavy Metal is the genre Dorian Lynskey , from that twitter exchange, espouses in the guardian and the quietus I think?

    Why does Dorien not have a go at the misogyny in heavy metal or the fact that 99% of fans of black metal (who are ALL white) are racists?

    You think he’s otm about metal being misogynistic and 99% of black metal fans are racist?

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Thursday, October 3, 2013 4:25 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I think Dorian is sarcastically saying the comment is so wrong in its facts that it can’t possibly be anywhere near OTM in its assumptions.

    ― Unsettled defender (ithappens), Thursday, October 3, 2013 4:40 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    not all fans of black metal are white (at least judging by attendance at Immortal, Watain and Mayhem shows in Baltimore over the past year or so, where there were some black fans, and plenty of Latino fans in the mix)

    and not all fans of black metal are racist either- you could go further and say that not even all fans of explicitly racist/Nazi black metal are racists, for that matter- listening isn’t voting and it isn’t necessarily a passive acceptance of the messages in the music (and I would also question whether the message within unintelligible distorted screeching/shrieking in a foreign language even constitutes a “message” at all for many listeners)

    it would be dumb to deny that there are ideological and committed racists in black metal fandom. there are. but it’s wrong to assume that the figure is anywhere close to 99%. that’s just ignorant trolling disguised as ethical concern (and sadly typical of the way in which people instrumentalize politics on behalf of an ethical beauty contest that’s mostly about feeling superior to someone else)

    ― the tune was space, Thursday, October 3, 2013 4:42 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    you could go further and say that not even all fans of explicitly racist/Nazi black metal are racists, for that matter- listening isn’t voting and it isn’t necessarily a passive acceptance of the messages in the music

    I cannot accept this argument.

    ― smang culture (DJP), Thursday, October 3, 2013 4:44 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    xp Yeah, it was sarcasm. I don’t think we need to waste time explaining why a confused Collapseboard commenter is wrong about metal.

    ― Deafening silence (DL), Thursday, October 3, 2013 4:46 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I spend hours of my time reading sixteenth and seventeenth century religious propaganda which demonizes Catholics on behalf of radical Protestantism. I do that because it’s also astonishingly beautiful poetry. But at no point do I side with, agree with, or endorse the hateful views which drive, say, Edmund Spenser’s “Faerie Queene”. The same dynamic- of seeing politically dangerous ideas for what they are, but not allowing that to totalize an artwork which operates on lots of levels in addition to its politically repellent ones- can obtain when listening to music, looking at paintings, or watching films. Politics and aesthetics can’t be separated, ever. But they’re not the same thing, ever. You can take both seriously, and in fact you have to if you’re going to responsibly engage with art.

    ― the tune was space, Thursday, October 3, 2013 4:48 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    ok DL,just wanted to check!

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Thursday, October 3, 2013 4:49 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I get where DJP is coming from but also where dr3w is too esp re this
    (and I would also question whether the message within unintelligible distorted screeching/shrieking in a foreign language even constitutes a “message” at all for many listeners)

    Extreme Metal seems to be a genre where lyrics do not matter so some can listen to say Burzum (who are not NSBM but the artist himself is a racist murdering fuckwit) as well as um … Graveland whose lyrics are neo nazi. (not me, i refuse to listen to nsbm) Many can listen to it and not agree with the lyrics they cant make out and just go for the music. Doesnt make it right, but there’s NO WAY 99% of Black Metal fans are racist. I doubt very much 99% of those misguided people who listen to NSBM are nazis either.

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Thursday, October 3, 2013 4:55 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Do you listen to Burzum AG? Just out of interest.

    ― Pingu Unchained (dog latin), Thursday, October 3, 2013 4:56 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I don’t feel it is the responsibility of people who are targets of oppression to work out which bits of the art created for purposes of helping continue their oppression are worth salvaging. I do take very personally art that explicitly rejects me or wishes ill on me and I feel no guilt about rejecting it right back, nor do I feel any guilt about wondering why others would expend energy looking for a reason to embrace it rather than reject it for its message.

    ― smang culture (DJP), Thursday, October 3, 2013 5:00 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I get that. Life’s too short to waste one’s time bending over backwards to “understand” hateful creeps and jerks, and the project of “seeing the good” in X or Y when there are lots of non-toxic artworks to enjoy without such handicaps / drawbacks makes total sense to me. Nor should you feel any guilt at all about such rejection.

    ― the tune was space, Thursday, October 3, 2013 5:14 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    dog latin i listen sometimes to mp3s as id never ever buy his stuff and support him financially. Also remember that the great majority of his (good) material came out before he became known as a nazi (which started when he was in prison iirc) and his music has no nazi signifiers at all.

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Thursday, October 3, 2013 5:17 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I listen to anti-semitic music sometimes. I used to write about it in grad school and while I’d never ‘enjoy’ listening to it, I do find it compelling on some level. I’ll listen to Burzum and other explicitly anti-Jewish artists occasionally – Absurd, is another one. I haven’t really done it in a year or so, so I’m not ideologically opposed to the idea. Hate is a really interested affect. I’m not trying to find the good in evil, I’m explicitly trying to find the evil in evil.

    ― Mordy , Thursday, October 3, 2013 5:20 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Posting that, though, it occurs to me that not only have I written similar posts on ILX before, but I think I’ve had exchanges about this very topic with DJP on ilx before. I guess I’m a broken record.

    ― Mordy , Thursday, October 3, 2013 5:20 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    next time I’m in the same city with any of y’all, I’m buying a round

    ― smang culture (DJP), Thursday, October 3, 2013 5:59 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    philly yo i think we’re already fb friends. i’ll take u to my favorite bar.

    ― Mordy , Thursday, October 3, 2013 6:04 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    nsbm tbf is pretty easy to ignore. You dont really come across it as its a very tiny scene who acts dont sell much but It is a bugger however when you hear a track you like thats been posted on ILM aka Nokturnal Mortum and it turns out its nsbm.

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Thursday, October 3, 2013 6:28 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Oh cool this again

    ― smangerz (Whiney G. Weingarten), Thursday, October 3, 2013 7:04 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Oh cool you saying ‘Oh cool this again’ again

    ― Pingu Unchained (dog latin), Thursday, October 3, 2013 8:26 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Sorry he mistook you for me DL. And there’ll always be room for you on the Quietus if you ever get the time or the inclination to write for us.

    ― Doran, Thursday, October 3, 2013 8:30 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Thanks Doran. I wasn’t saying I don’t write for Quietus as a big “fuck no”, just a statement of fact at the moment. I didn’t twig that he’d confused Dorian with Doran so I was just baffled.

    Anyway, what do you have to say about misogyny in heavy metal you big hypocrite? j/k

    ― Deafening silence (DL), Thursday, October 3, 2013 8:47 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    What’s wrong with being sexy? is my initial response.

    I had a piece on dubstep submitted to me once by a very well respected scribe who claimed that any misogyny in dubstep and grime was caused solely by the influence of one scene DJ who used to be a metalhead and that it had to be “that whole Beavis and Butthead thing” that he’d brought over with him, like the shipbound rat who brought the black plague to Norway in 1349. So there you have it ‘Bell Dem Slags’ by The Newham Generals – obviously the fault of Manowar and/or Tankard.

    ― Doran, Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:16 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    “the black plague” being the “black death”… my true white supremacist black metal nature shining through unfortunately for a second there.

    ― Doran, Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:18 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    wait, Manowar are gay shurely?

    ― lusty thoughts of big, strong, powerful hipsters (Noodle Vague), Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:25 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I believe they’re very happy at what they do, yes.

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:39 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    All rock and roll is homosexual. Apart from Cold Chisel.

    ― Doran, Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:40 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    I had a piece on dubstep submitted to me once by a very well respected scribe who claimed that any misogyny in dubstep and grime was caused solely by the influence of one scene DJ who used to be a metalhead and that it had to be “that whole Beavis and Butthead thing”
    Kevin Martin getting the blame?

    ― pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:40 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    *Everybody* knows Haim are terrible. And they’re Tories to boot.
    What

    ― polyphonic, Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:45 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Scuba? (xpost)

    ― My god. Pure ideology. (ey), Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:49 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    Apparently people are taking the fact that they posed with Cameron because they were booked on a show together after dedicating a fairly meanspirited song to him as deeply indicative of their politics.

    ― The Reverend, Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:57 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

    XP: It wasn’t Scuba but you’re along the right kind of lines. I can’t even remember the guy’s name but he used to be in some Kerrang! style band for five minutes “back in the day”.

    ― Doran, Thursday, October 3, 2013 11:08 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

  38. Chester Whelks October 4, 2013 at 8:15 pm

    REVEREND TRUE: “How very much I’ve tried my best to give you a good life. But in spite of all of my trying a handful of people, with their lies, have made our lives impossible. There’s no way to detach ourselves from what’s happened today. 

    So my opinion is that you be kind to children and be kind to seniors and take the potion like they used to take in ancient Greece and step over quietly because we are not committing suicide; it’s a revolutionary act. We can’t go back; they won’t leave us alone. They’re now going back to tell more lies, which means more music writers. And there’s no way, no way we can survive.”

  39. RJC October 4, 2013 at 9:10 pm

    I think that lots of interesting things have come out of this Haim review, and lets face it it was never really a review of the Haim album in the first place, was it?

    I enjoyed ET’s invoking of the London mediatype collective hivemind. Lynskey’s response was “You’re just babbling now” which seemed a little unfair and I thought displayed a possibly wilful misunderstanding of the situation.

    “The problem you hivemind types have is believing that anyone can think differently to you.” is what old man True said. I like his style.

  40. Chester Whelks October 4, 2013 at 9:33 pm

    ‘Hivemind’ is a little rich coming from here though, right?

  41. RJC October 4, 2013 at 9:54 pm

    Dunno, I only read Scott Creney’s stuff.

  42. Dan October 5, 2013 at 1:54 am

    People trying to crib on Scott’s infamousness make me sick, that was my idea, get in line you turbofucks.

  43. Suzie2999 October 5, 2013 at 1:58 am

    There’s no way this review is sexist.
    Haim are crap but agree this review is also crap.

  44. The Risen Christ October 5, 2013 at 2:15 am

    Christ ILX is such a bellend hive, imagine posting in amongst John Doran and Dorian Lynskey and not having a can of deoderant handy.

  45. RJC October 6, 2013 at 3:52 am

    I’ve changed my mind a bit. I don’t think that Haim are marketed solely at white middle aged men, its just that being one myself I only became aware of them through white middle aged man channels (Guardian Guide, Amazon emails, The Quietus etc).

    I suspect that Haim are probably being marketed at everyone between the ages of 8 and 80. Record sales aren’t what they used to be you see. I don’t know what channels are used to market at 15 year old girls and I don’t know any 15 year old girls so its not really for me to say on that front.

    I do think there is something quite Be Here Now-esque about the media response to this Haim album though. Whether that is as a result of the hivemind or some form of mass hysteria amongst London media types I couldn’t say. The praise heaped upon Be Here Now was quite remarkable at the time. I wonder what Lynskey and the other Haim fans will think of this album in 12 months/5 years/10 years time? We’re all entitled to change our opinions of course.

    Anyway, Haim are supposedly just 28 copies behind Justin Timberlake in the race to the top of the UK album charts. Best of luck to them both. Smile for the cameras girls

    http://thefly.mamacolive.com/thefly/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/haim-main-2-686×437.jpg

  46. El Paramore October 12, 2013 at 5:46 pm

    An excellent review and a worrying and baffling response in some quarters. Dorian L’s rejoinder on twitter highlights all that is wrong with the liberal intelligentsia. They claim the moral high ground based on a false premise, they are always always right and anybody who disagrees is either an idiot a misogynist, racist, homophobic or a mix and match of all four. To adopt such a baseless stance really does do an injustice to these very real issues. Yet here Mr. L backtracks yet offers no apology (although the best one could expect is the old “I’m sorry YOU feel like that” none apology). He fails to point out were the review is sexist or even when he adopts the fall back position where there are sexist “undertones.” Why? Because there aren’t any! He also calls the review repellent? Again why? He does very little to explain it- Because he doesn’t agree with it? I find it quite dangerous to call something that cleary isn’t – “sexist” as away of dismissing it for want of a better argument
    It’s refreshing to see an alternative view expressed to the baffling consensus about a distinctly average band, which make blandness an art form.

    The only other two ( UK ) reviews I’ve read that were anyway disparaging of the industry anointed saviors of music where on God Is In the TV, maybe a rant more than a review

    http://www.godisinthetvzine.co.uk/2013/10/02/haim-days-are-gone/,
    and The VPME , –

    http://www.thevpme.com/2013/10/03/pins-girls-like-us-cutting-through-the-hype/

    which doesn’t review Haim but manages to point out why they consider Haim aren’t all that reviewing another band. It also points out as has been mentioned here; the band is too big to fail. Aside from that it’s damn near been a full on media love in.
    So bravo Scott, and a virtual high five to Wallace Wylie whose comments were an absolute joy.

  47. Charles October 15, 2013 at 11:19 am

    I love how cunts are bickering over this album when people are out there making music that you might like. How about you just move on and forget about your ‘state of music’ woes and bullshit oh wait this is Collapse Board lol.

  48. Everett True October 15, 2013 at 11:32 am

    The irony of commenting on a blog post to complain about the amount of comments left on a blog post appears to be lost on Charles.

  49. FFNORDZZ October 19, 2013 at 3:40 am

    The reality of the situation, is that, regretfully, old school dinosaur media outlets like the Guardian, BBC radio playlist producers, most of the British print media who more than ever work on the basis of payola from the majors – I.E saying they like Haim or whoever is the big major push at that given moment is literally where their wage comes from – are still more influential than they should be, or than we (members of the ‘alternative’ music community) would ever like to admit. In the case of Haim this has become painfully apparent, to the point where it’s almost laughable.

    This is mallrock you guys are character assassinating each other over! Music for jocks and cheerleaders to ‘vibe’ to while they browse the racks of Abercrombie and Fitch. This is bland industry Muzak played by a band who are down with David Cameron. What on Earth are you doing attacking each other over this?

    The tasteless, blatantly obvious payola job that the stultifyingly out of touch mainstream music media have disgraced themselves with regarding Haim should be the kind of thing that unites the alternative outlets. I mean, if ever there were a band/campaign that served to demonstrate just how big of a schism there is in quality between mainstream guitar music and alternative guitar music, this is that campaign… and you’re on the winning team, yet you’re trashing each other over the semantics in describing the losers.

    It’s a funny old world.

  50. Madeline January 3, 2014 at 2:48 am

    what a goddamn circle jerk.

  51. Andrew L February 19, 2014 at 6:38 am

    I’m astonished that anyone could be arsed to make such a fuss about a band who’s main claim to fame is their ability to string cliches together until they’ve got to there minutes and then think, ‘oh well, that’s another one done’. Haim stink and this review captures that perfectly. DL’s critique is more than faintly ridiculous, which would be his own business if he wasn’t going to bandy around bizarre accusations for no apparent reason.

  52. Shelor October 30, 2014 at 3:50 am

    A year later, I come back to read this review again. I scroll through the comments. Tingle a bit from the passion and life that was stirring at the time. My only question a year later is, what’s a Haim?

  53. Pingback: Album reviews | Haim – Days Are Gone (Columbia) | COLLAPSE BOARD | whatevernevermind

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *