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Week 5:

The Weeknd - Album Challenge

Spoiler

 

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Spoiler

 

Nightcrawler is the third studio album by Canadian singer the Weeknd, released on February 24 2020, by Republic Records and XO. It was produced primarily by the Weeknd, along with a variety of producers such as DaHeala, Illangelo, Max Martin, Metro Boomin, and OPN, most of whom the Weeknd had worked with previously. The standard edition of the album features Troye Sivan on the song June, and the remixed edition contains guest appearances from Chromatics and Nicki Minaj. Thematically, Nightcrawler explores promiscuity, overindulgence, and self-loathing.

 

The album has been perceived as a reinvention for The Weeknd, with the introduction of new wave, retro and dream pop influences. The artwork and aesthetic for the album's promotional material has been described as psychedelic and being inspired by various films, such as Casino (1995), The Shining (1980), Halloween (1978), Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998), Joker (2019), Uncut Gems ( 2019). The title of the album was inspired by the 2014 movie of the same name by Dan Gilroy.

 

Nightcrawler debuted at #2 and was supported by two singles: "Pursuit" and "Fever", with the later topping the Billboard Singles Chart. The album was reissued as Nightcrawler (Deluxe) on February 28th.

 

Tracklist:

 

AUTOMATIC LOVE (ABEL “THE WEEKND” TESFAYE, JASON “DAHEALA” QUENNEVILLE, CARLO “ILLANGELO” MONTAGNESE, ADAM FEENEY);

The album’s opener features twinkling synths, setting the album’s heavy throwback tone early on. 

 

KILL THE NIGHT (TESFAYE, QUENNEVILLE,MONTAGNESE, ERIC BURTON FREDERIC);

The throbbing electro-R&B beat with Halloween-esque chords bring Tesfaye’s apologetic musings to another level.

 

SECOND TO NONE (TESFAYE, KARL MARTIN SANDBERG, OSCAR HOLTER);

One of several tracks that showcases a rather energetic switch-up finds the musician trying to make sense of the end of a relationship, and ultimately taking the blame

 

EUPHORIA (TESFAYE, AHMAD BALSHE, SANDBERG, HOLTER, DANIEL LOPATIN, ELTON JOHN, BERNARD JP. TAUPIN);

“Euphoria” features a rhythmic ebb and flow that matches the cadence of his vocals. The song finds him singing about how his lover is having a hard time grappling with a debilitating breakup.

 

THE JOURNEY (TESFAYE, QUENNEVILLE, BALSHE, MONTAGNESE);

In the album’s most potent and visceral story arc, The Weeknd reminisces about his past life, and displays a bit of thematic growth while also referencing his song “Fire” (Trouble in Paradise). 

 

CITY OF ANGELS (TESFAYE, MONTAGNESE, LELAND TYLER WAYNE, MIKE MCTAGGART);

The Weeknd discusses the ins and outs of his current relationship, which he attributes to their personal lives and the fast-and-loose Los Angeles lifestyle.

 

AMEN (TESFAYE, BALSHE, MONTAGNESE, WAYNE);

“Amen” boasts some of the best production on the album. The synths and trap work together incredibly well and amps up the eerie factor and keeps you holding on to hear what happens next.

 

PURSUIT (TESFAYE, WAYNE, MONTAGNESE, ANDRE ERIC PROCTOR);

One of the album’s leading singles, you’ve likely already grown accustomed to its numb yet social media-ready lyrics and slow trap beat.

 

FEVER (TESFAYE, QUENNEVILLE, SANDBERG, HOLTER);

Another one of the album’s lead singles, “Fever” ties in Stranger Things-style energy with a much more enthusiastic lyrical approach displaying thoughts on his relationship, which it appears he doesn’t want to live without.

 

JUNE FT. TROYE SIVAN (TESFAYE, TROYE SIVAN, BALSHE, SANDBERG, HOLTER);

One of the more vulnerable songs on the album, sees The Weeknd dropping his guard to let some of his feelings out. One of the project's biggest standout moments which takes the album to truly nostalgic proportions.

 

SWEET DECEPTION (TESFAYE, BALSHE, QUENNEVILLE, SANDBERG, HOLTER);

One of the most pop-driven songs on the album and The Weeknd doesn’t hold back. The production remains upbeat and steady the entire time.

 

REMEMBER - INTERLUDE ( TESFAYE, KEVIN PARKER, LOPANTIN);

The track combines psychedelic energy, thanks to production by Kevin Parker, with bass-heavy trap rhythms. This particular hip-hop transition is welcome, as it continues to infuse the airy, experimental sound.

 

NIGHTCRAWLER (TESFAYE, BALSHE, MONTAGNESE, QUENNEVILLE, MARIO WINANS);

Here is where the trap and synth combination work in harmony the best. The heartbeat thumps and echoey production encapsulate the mysterious nature of the singer.

 

PHASES ( TESFAYE, WAYNE, LOPANTIN, MEJOI PHARS);

The album’s ultimate full-circle moment, sees The Weeknd out of energy to continue on in the relationship he references throughout the album.

 

 

 

 

 

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