It's been a long time coming for this post. If you know me you know how much I love The Weeknd. If you know me even better you know that I was a little nervous about this album. Before we get to my nerves let's start at the beginning of my standom.
2011 Candice went through a ton of changes. I beat my freshman year of college, avoided gaining 15 extra pounds, and I was finding out more about what made me tick. The man, the myth, the legend Abel Tesfaye, better known as The Weeknd, was one my first tastes of a spiritual experience through music that didn't come from gospel or something my parents passed down to me. As I've said before, I was a book and activities kid so as far as music was concerned I only knew what my parents exposed me to and radio hits. House of Balloons' mysterious sound coupled with lyrics shrouded in drugs, sex, and emotional indifference spoke to me. Was it because I was wet behind to ears? Probably. From that day on I was drawn to his projects like a moth to a flame.
That year The Weeknd would release two more mixtapes after HoB. At this time Tumblr was king and Twitter was still picking up steam. However, The Weeknd's American fanbase had no clue how he looked or if he was a member of a band. All I knew is that I planned to ride the XO train until it lost steam. Fortunate for me it hasn’t slowed down yet.
After releasing Trilogy (his 3 mixtapes remastered for the world in 2012), he spent a little more time getting on the music scene. He showed us his face, gave us some fire features, and quietly rose up the charts. His debut album, Kissland, did well but truthfully it took some time to grow on me. I remember seeing the tour posters all over campus. There were days I contemplated skipping class to go to a show.
Last August The Weeknd released his second album, Beauty Behind The Madness. This album came with ALL the bells and whistles. The Weeknd collaborated with many different artists and projects leading up to its release date. He lent a hand to the Hunger Games and Fifty Shades of Grey soundtracks, easily making him a household name. Last year I did a brief spill about BBTM but I still have yet to do the album justice. I love that album so much and I am so happy to see The Weeknd achieve such a high level of success.
It took a while to get through the backstory but here we are at the meat and potatoes of my post. I’m pretty sure I pledged allegiance to The Weeknd somewhere between 2011 and last year but Starboy solidified it. I was excited but very nervous about this album. Album cover piqued my interest, short haired Baebel was back, and Starboy was my repeat jam. But when False Alarm came out a few weeks later it left me wanting more.
November 25th, 2016. Starboy drops.
I pushed my Spotify app with trembling fingers. Thankfully my Beats are greeted with a swanky new Weeknd sound. He’s evolved from the overt dark sounds of past projects. After 3 mixtapes and 2 albums, Baebel is able to recreate himself each and every time. Starboy is his most cohesive project to date. Aside from the singles, Rockin’, True Colors, and Sidewalks are stand out tracks that are fun to listen to and showcase that Weeknd flavor I love so much. I'm ready to see what else The Weeknd has in store for me. XOTWOD. Meet me at the Charlotte show in May.
**Check out the end of the playlist for Weeknd tunes. Tweet, comment, and share your thoughts!
Update: I saw him live for the very first time on May 18th. I'm going to see him again in my home city in October. My heart swells.