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HAIM --- Women In Music Pt. III

References are the key to our musical hearts. Hear something vaguely recognizable while listening to a record you have never heard before is very amusing. “Pop music for people who loves music”, as I am calling it. Women in Music: Part III is one of these records. During the 41 minutes runtime, I heard Alanis Morrisette-frustration, Marc Bolan-sleaze, Levon Helm-drums (listen to the drumbeat in “Gasoline” and compare it to the Band’s “Up On Cripple Creek”), and acoustic Joni Mitchell-arrangements, just to mention a few.

But accusing Haim of “stealing” makes no justice. The way they weave it all together with memorable phrases and catchy grooves on a record that follows a hilly but cohesive path through their musical landscape makes the record truly come into its own. After the jazz-inspired “Los Angeles”, the infectious lead single “The Steps”, the sleazy “Up From a Dream”, and the funky “Gasoline”, the record starts to lose momentum, infusing an unfitting hip-hop experiment and some tracks that never really lifts, before Haim gets back on their path with a lovely set of acoustic numbers that end with the Joni Mitchell-inspired “Man From the Magazine”. It annoys me that Haim decided to include the messy “All That Ever Mattered” just before the end, disrupting the nice flow they’ve built up during the last few numbers, but it is saved by the guitar riff-driven closer “FUBT”.

All in all, this is an inspirational and enjoyable album with a pretty unique down-to-earth production, and even though some of the hip-hop and noise-experiments doesn’t quite work and some of the songs doesn’t quite lift, Haim always manages to get back on track without losing the flow of the album.


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