“The No. 1 Station to Free Your Soul, Dawn 103.5”

Lily Daher, Scarlet Staff

“Intense, graphic, sexy, euphoric; Provocative, edgy, thought-provoking,” (Every Angel is Terrifying). 

From “Blinding Lights” to “Save Your Tears” to “Take My Breath”, The Weeknd has demonstrated his creative freedom yet again. 

The Weeknd has taken the music industry by storm with his newest album, “Dawn FM.” I cannot recall any other artist who has designed their album this way, transitioning into the next song without interruption. And, let us not forget his theme of incorporating radio station concepts into his songs. 

The album kicks off with its namesake, “Dawn FM.” This song introduces what we are to expect from this album: a radio-like aspect that most artists have never been inclined to adopt in their music. 

Following the song “Dawn FM,” the rest of the album begins with tracks like “Sacrifice,” and “Gasoline,” and the song that introduced us to this new album, “Take My Breath.” These songs harbor a lot of energy and kick off the story. They scream 80s vibes and continue the story of the R&B artist’s life. Some might even say that  “Take My Breath” and “Thriller” by Michael Jackson give off a comparable vibe. After all, The Weeknd draws influence from 80s artists like Michael Jackson and Prince. 

“A Tale by Quincy” is where the album transitions. Following that one, we get into songs like “Out of Time,” where we really delve into the album’s depth. The songs begin as normal, but towards the end, it turns into something else. At the end of the songs, we can usually expect a form of dialogue, and it’s captivating. Each area of dialogue offers a different aspect of what we would usually expect at the conclusion of a song on the radio. Though we are not used to this kind of music, it opens up doors for creativity in the music industry. The majority of the songs on the album, including and following “Out of Time,” are very similar in the idea that they all have a similar style of song, radio DJ, and the radio DJ himself, is actor Jim Carrey. At the end of “Every Angel is Terrifying,” an ad arises, advertising merchandise and complementing the music at the end of the song. 

Then the album eases into more mellow songs: “Is there someone else,” and “Less Than Zero.” There are a few more songs in this part of the album, all of them taking a sort of melancholic form despite the album’s opening upbeat atmosphere. 

The Weeknd was one of many artists whose tour was canceled due to the pandemic. While most artists have been able to come back from the deterrence, the Weeknd has not. The Weeknd canceled his tour and has redesigned it into what is called the “After Hours Til Dawn” tour. 

Tesfaye’s style is to never explicitly state what his plans are until he eventually releases them. With the cancellation of his “After Hours” tour and the release of “Take My Breath,” as well as other distinct social media changes on Abel’s half, some suspected that we could expect a new album, possibly a tour as well.

“Dawn FM” is the second installment in what is to be another trilogy of albums. He has a few tweets that would indicate this, especially since he never explicitly shares his plans. One states “9 pm // 12 am // 3 am” (January 14), and “and the end… then the beginning and then back to the end, beginning, end, beginning, end…. help” (January 12). This new album is the morning that follows his previous album, “After Hours”. Can we expect the afternoon next? What does Abel have in store for his listeners?