One of two highly anticipated new albums for me in 2013 is Kiss Land by The Weeknd (Canadian-born Abel Tesfaye and his array of producers). Coming off the success of 2012’s triple-disc feature Trilogy (and the 2011 “mixtape” albums that it compiles) along with a break-out world tour, September 10th will bring the dark-themed r&b soul singer’s first “proper” release to worldwide fans (raising my hand) starving for more of his seedy tales set to sex-inspired chill-out beats (a la trip-hop and hip-hop), seductive basslines, and haunting melodies — all drenched in smoke, sweat and sin. Aww yeah! It’s The Weeknd, baby, and we ain’t leaving the bedroom until . . . oops, sorry, I got a little ahead of myself there. Although, from what I’ve read in the press, I’m getting the sense that this new album will be somewhat of a departure, though still very much carrying that Toronto-inflected sound that gave the artist his original platform. We shall see.
Recently Tesfaye told Complex Music.com that “The only thing R&B about my [music] is the style of singing. My inspiration is R. Kelly, Michael Jackson, and Prince, for the vocals anyway. My production and songwriting, and the environment around those vocals are not inspired by R&B at all.”
Also, that he “wrote a letter to the producers of Portishead and let them know this album [Kiss Land] inspired by them.”
Personally I can only hope the new disc is a sizzler like previous The Weeknd releases. I had bumped that Trilogy CD set (which consolidated the House of Balloons, Thursday and Echoes of Silence — the first three digital mixtape albums + 3 all-new bonus tracks into one convenient physical package) in my car all this past fall and winter long. It kept me warm. Regardless, it’s good to know that Kiss Land, which Tesfaye has said is yet another concept album, will keep me warm this coming fall and winter.
Advance singles have already been released. Here’s the video for “Belong to the World”.