The Boston date of HAIM‘s Sister Sister Sister tour was special, to say the least. Their headlining show at Agganis Arena was the band’s first arena show as a headliner. HAIM is no stranger to big shows. The iconic middle-parted sisters have played music festivals across the country throughout the years. I mean come on, they played before Beyoncé on the main stage at Coachella this year. But this arena was all theirs. They commanded the space with synchronized dancing, flashing lights and the type of funny stage banter that reflects the authentic family dynamics that make HAIM so unique and lovable as a band of sisters. Watching them perfectly captures the feeling when you and your siblings grow up and finally realize, ‘hey, my family is actually kind of cool.’
You do not want to skip the opener of the tour: Lizzo.
Lizzo is a hip hop artist with catchy songs and incredible stage presence. You might know her from her feel good anthem “Good As Hell.” Lizzo is all about confidence, body positivity and self-love. During her set, she told the audience after the show to look in the mirror and say, “I love you. You are beautiful. You can do anything.” Lizzo has an all female ensemble: two backup dancers called “The Big Girls,” and DJ Sophia Eris. Everything about Lizzo is mesmerizing. She commanded the stage, even managing to get the audience to do the wave around the entire arena. At one point her dancers dressed up in wedding dresses and threw flowers in the crowd. Lizzo is not just ‘the opener.’ She is a show in herself, and you are making a mistake if you miss her.
HAIM’s set featured a mix of songs from “Days Are Gone” and their newer album “Something To Tell You.”
Neither album is categorized as ‘party’ or dance music, but HAIM still got people up out of their seats to dance. “Something To Tell You” is a mix of songs about break-ups and moving on, but they spun these potentially sad narratives into empowering lessons. If someone isn’t treating you right, walk away. You deserve better. You deserve to dance, be happy and celebrate. Each sister was in a bright red outfit: Alana in a red denim jacket and lace up pants, Danielle in a fully red suit, blazer and all, and Este in a red floor length dress appropriate for prom season. They all took turns singing and playing different instruments. Danielle even took a step back to the drums for “Forever.”
agganis arena in Boston ❤️ pic.twitter.com/yshu0Hgb4O
— HAIM (@HAIMtheband) May 4, 2018
HAIM doesn’t rely on gimmicky stage tricks to keep the audience’s attention.
There were no background images projected onto the stage. They didn’t even have a screen to show themselves. The show was just them, onstage, being themselves and doing what they do best — playing their music. Este started a “I’m feeling awesome in Boston,” song chant off the top of her head and followed it up with, “I’ll see you all at the Grammy’s.” Danielle, quiet as she is, spoke through her undeniable talent, absolutely shredding on the guitar solo leading into “Right Now” during the encore. Alana defended herself as the youngest sister, saying she’s the reason the band didn’t scrap “Want You Back,” which ended up being one of their first single off the album. It felt like we as the audience was just watching their daily interactions, but now we were also a part of it. We could laugh and love with them.
HAIM’s stage presence transcends just sisters or friends.
They’re also incredibly talented and connected to each other and the audience. They kept pausing to take a look out into the crowd, their first personal arena crowd. Each sister was candid about how blown away they were by the experience. It felt like mutual awe, the audience there to see a band they love, the band looking out on the audience with gratitude. During the echo-y, chilling song “Night So Long,” the sisters stood right next to each other in the middle of the stage, surrounded by an arena full of phone lights. With their angelic harmonies, it felt almost like a religious moment. Ironically shortly before Alana made a joke about her voice cracking like she was a 13-year-old at her bat mitzvah. Take me to temple, HAIM. After this show, I’d follow you anywhere.
thank u for all your love last night, Boston. we will never forget that show ❤️ pic.twitter.com/kfALm1zH2d
— HAIM (@HAIMtheband) May 4, 2018
Also published on Medium.