Sorry for missing yesterday’s song of the day, folks! Hopefully today’s artist spotlight will make it up to you (it should). Today’s artist spotlight is the mysterious R&B singer The Weeknd. The Weeknd is not a group or collab as many believe, but a lone 20-year-old from Toronto. Like former spotlighted artist Frank Ocean, The Weeknd has made significant waves from his single mixtape that he has released, titled House of Balloons (available for download below).
The Weeknd takes samples from a variety of genres from artists like Beach House (“Loft Music”) and Siouxsie and the Branshiees (House of Balloons/Glass Table Girls) to create a unique electro hip-hop and indie vibe. The Weeknd also combines synths and heavy bass to add even more distinction to his sensual lyrics.
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Much of The Weeknd’s fame has come from a co-sign from Young Money artist Drake. Drake has recently been tweeting lyrics from The Weeknd’s “Wicked Games”. There have also been rumors that Drake’s producer, Noah “40” Shebib, worked on House of Balloons. The rumors were quickly dispelled by The Weeknd himself via twitter.
What does The Weeknd sound like? In my opinion, he combines the best of Drake’s R&B voice and lyrics with those of The-Dream. Some songs give you a classic 90s R&B vibe while others will give off a futuristic and indie feel. It’s no stretch to say that The Weeknd and Frank Ocean can reshape R&B music in dramatic fashion.
But how much of an impact can The Weeknd really make on the R&B scene? After all, there are no guarantees that The Weeknd will grow as an artist. House of Balloons is a fantastic debut mixtape, but there is still room for improvement. Do classic R&B fans really dig the new indie-R&B fusion that The Weeknd brings to the table? Or is this just a fad of 2011 that will soon disappear into darkness? Frank Ocean and The Weeknd certainly are giving fans something to talk about, but let’s see if they can actually permeate that talk rather than become afterthoughts like many artists have become. Give the tape a listen and let me know what you think.
Click here to download House of Balloons.