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New Music: The Weeknd

By Gurman Sahota, November 26 2016 —

Starboy may be the Weeknd’s best work yet. Abel Tesfaye has released an eclectic mix of songs that takes this third album from his slternative R&B niche and moves towards dance and electronic music. There isn’t a dull moment and the tempo of the entire work ebbs and flows in one cohesive piece.ent_starboy

The album starts with three well-recognized singles that hit a more electronic vibe — “Starboy,” “Party Monster” and “False Alarm” — before the album changes tone with “Reminder.”

A softer, smoother tune, “Reminder” highlights the Weeknd’s efficiency in bouncing back and forth from chart toppers to more refined songs that demand the listener’s attention. The album is punctuated by softer songs, jumping from the sombre tones of “Reminder” to a more upbeat tempo of other points in the work.

It is difficult to pinpoint exactly where the Weeknd does his best work in Starboy, but it is a welcome difficulty — the album does not fall flat in any particular song. The collection of electronic music combined with with alternative R&B works very well in his favour.

The lengthy album features 18 songs and includes a handful of seemingly contradictory artist collaborations, from Lana Del Rey to Kendrick Lamar and Future. Daft Punk collaborates twice on the record for both the opening and final songs which helps listeners enjoy the piece as one entity.

There is something to be said about “Love to Lay” a song reminiscent of the “Dirty Diana” – era of Michael Jackson, but with a more contemporary upbringing. It is an unexpected hit of subtle nostalgia.

With each of the 18 tracks carefully crafted, it isn’t unreasonable to claim that this is the Weeknd’s best work to date. It may also be one of the best albums released this year. If you’ve hit your quota of holiday music and need something to bring you out of your jingle bell coma, Starboy will go to infinity and beyond.

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