Keeping to his meek, cryptic mantra, The Weeknd’s new mixtape Echoes of Silence was released in the same fashion we are used to. No interviews, no promo videos, just simply letting the music do the talking. Despite his lack of self-promotion, Able Tesfaye’s moniker now carries a reputation of quality. His musical pedigree is duly earned, gained following the successful House of Balloons and Thursday. Perhaps this seemingly shy public nature (he has yet to give an official interview) stems from a surprise of success.
Any feelings of disappointment following Thursday are eradicated with this final installment in his “Balloons” trilogy. Tesfaye seems to have found a niche, a combination of sounds that is original and deeply resonate. He describes it best himself: “for me, quality and quantity go hand in hand…”. Echoes of Silence rivals the legendary House of Balloons in quality, both filled to the brim with moody ballads to his chosen vices: Drugs, Sex, and Women.
The reason behind his success lies behind releasing his brutal, honest emotions; wails of pain, lust, and insobriety. Ever present are these elements in his music, seemingly the spark behind his smoldering voice. His promises are followed by reassurances; you want these feelings that he describes, all you need to do is succumb. It’s a trap, as the more you listen to his crooning voice, the harder it gets to press pause. Overwhelmingly refreshing in a genre criticized for its repetitiveness, his ability to personify night is unparalleled. The future of R&B? We will have to wait and see.
A gorgeous opener. The best way to judge a cover is by not comparing it to its original, as The Weeknd makes it his own. These familiar words carry a different meaning through his voice.
A ballad to a fame-chaser, Abel speaks of her with his brutal honesty. “You just want me cuz’ I’m next..” he repeats, as the piano plays in the background. A very well put together track.
Echoes of Silence
The title track, this is the gem of the tape. Begging a lover to stay the night, the echoes of silence are his thoughts of loneliness.