While collaborations with artists from other genres are becoming the norm in dance music, Calvin Harris has been producing tracks with A-list vocalists for years now. From Florence Welch to John Newman, Harris has a knack for creating hits with artists that have never before ventured into electronic music territory. Los Angeles based girl group HAIM, most often compared to Fleetwood Mac and well known for their offbeat Beyoncé covers, seemed an unlikely choice to contribute to Harris’ latest album, Motion. However, this isn’t your typical Calvin Harris banger; his trademark hard-hitting electro sound is taken down a notch here, instead opting for an atmospheric and otherworldly beat that complements HAIM’s enchanting vocals.
A witch-themed music video seemed a no-brainier given the track’s spellbinding feel, and the result incorporates some familiar pop culture references while remaining visually striking. The opening font is lifted directly from American Horror Story, which famously featured a season revolving around a coven of witches. The Haim sisters appear looking stoic and almost vampiric, standing side-by-side against impossibly beautiful backdrops. The opening riff is clearly inspired by Stevie Nick’s “Edge of Seventeen,” a winking nod to the Fleetwood Mac comparisons. Nicks, herself famously and humorously rumored to be a witch, seems to set the tone for the entire video: from that immediately recognizable riff to the gypsy-like costuming and the “snow covered hills” that HAIM dance around on. The result is a track and video that are welcome breath of fresh air in dance music. The song, largely without a drop, and the video, lacking the usual babes and bottles, may never be played in the club or at the next big festival, but Harris and HAIM worked magic on “Pray to God” and created a stunning video.