While not a Leonard Cohen cover, the new offering is certainly of the intimate variety. In a detailed Instagram post, the group’s Este Haim said “Hallelujah” is dedicated to anyone suffering from chronic illness and those that support them on a daily basis.
(Read: The Top 100 Albums of the 2010s)
According to the bassist, her verse was written just days after receiving “pretty terrible news” from her doctor. “To me it’s a song about relying on the people around you and reflecting on how different life could be if those people weren’t around,” she noted. Este specifically highlighted the comfort provided by her two siblings and bandmates, Danielle and Alana,
“I came home from the doctor super upset and frustrated and the only two people i felt comfortable enough to talk about it with were danielle and alana. sometimes it feels like they’re the only two people that truly understand me and support me when i feel like giving up. they’ve been with me everyday supporting me and cheering me on since i was diagnosed at 14 years old. and i don’t know what i would do without them…”
“Hallelujah” was produced by Danielle, alongside regular collaborators Ariel Rechtshaid and former Vampire Weekend member Rostam Batmanglij. The new song’s video, which is streaming below, was directed by renowned filmmaker Paul Thomas Anderson.
The group’s last record, Something to Tell You, dropped two years ago. As 2019 draws to a close, Consequence of Sound has included the HAIM album on lists like the Top 100 Songs of the 2010s and the Top 25 Pop Albums of the 2010s.
Update, December 20th: HAIM have shared a holiday “Thank You” version of the “Hallelujah” video, made of phone-shot footage of fans and a few celebrity cameos. Some recognizable faces include Charli XCX, Childish Gambino, Clairo, Emma Stone, and Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig. Said the sisters of the clip on Instagram,
“2019 is coming to a close and here’s a little something to say thank you for all the love you guys have given our songs that we released this year. We appreciate everyone who submitted and we added a few surprises too! There’s so much more we want to share but you’re just gonna have to wait till 2020. I’m not crying you’re crying ❤️”
Find the “Thank You” version beneath PTA’s video ahead.
You’re going to hear something so special from @HAIMtheband today. ‘Hallelujah’ is a song you’ll carry with you forever. Trust.
— Zane Lowe (@zanelowe) November 18, 2019