Starboy - The Weeknd (Album Review)(Part 1 of 3)PhenomentalOne Here we are, at The Weeknd's latest project, which is the poppiest thing he has ever done, another sign that Abel Tesfaye is no longer a secret few could enjoy. He himself said, "This might be the best-sounding album I've ever done." So, did it live up to it's expectations?
To tell you the truth, at 18 tracks and over 70 minutes long, this is definitely a BIG album, which also turned out to be it's downfall. But at the same time, there were some positives that everyone can agree upon. So, let's examine this, piece-by-piece and find out whether this is a high quality album or a Grammy-Award-winning album.
1. Starboy (Ft. Daft Punk)
Our album starts with it's lead single and title track and boy, it's a roller coaster ride.
First of all, let me tell you, Abel is a genius (I don't have to, but still). The fact that he recruited The Kings Of Disco Music for his uhh...disco album, is downright awesome. Yeah, Daft Punk's presence on this song make this song from a meaningful-but-boring rap about fame and 'Haterz Gonna Hate' to a straight-up pop perfection. Tell me the truth, didn't even YOU like the simple 'ha's in the chorus more than whatever Abel was singing about when you first heard this song. Then it grew on you and appeared at the top of your 'Best Hit Songs of 2016' list. And I don't need to talk about the mid-chorus drop, the energy-packed moment of this track which takes your breath away.
But old fans might ask, "Where is the old Abel, OUR Abel?". Well, you look at the instrumentals and it becomes clear that this song is darker than it sounds. The grand piano gives it the Trilogy touch that it needs to be called a The Weeknd song.
Best Part of the Song - Daft Punk (Bow down to the legends)
2. Party Monster
If 'I Feel It Coming' is heaven and 'Starboy' is earth, then this is hell.
I like this but it took a long time to grow on me. Like this is the eeriest song on the whole album and deservedly so. The lyrics about hooking up with a stripper, but still 'seeing something' in her, like, you know that this is the signal of another failed relationship. Also, Lana's presence seems unnecessary but she still does her part well. Also, again, this is another time where Demon Abel sounds good. It's like we've entered his house where he is relaxed and ultimately, at his best.
Best Part of the Song - The piano, I guess (Like seriously, what is the thing that keeps on playing the whole time and gives the song a vampiric edge? It is the piano, right?)
3. False Alarm
I've thought about and analysed this song for weeks. And I've finally got it.
The reason why many critics like this, I haven't figured that out. But what I've noticed is that people who listen to all genres of music (like critics do) will love the album version of this song. But I'm a sucker for the live version (where the song's BPM is reduced by 5). Just that simple step manages to add in some extra thrill and suspense while maintaining the energy and trust me, this song needs it. I guess even Abel realized that but by then it was too late.
Best Part of the Song - The creepy transition in the end which leads to...
Okay, I've seen a lot of criticism over this. It's time for me to defend this like a fanboy (but with a brain).
I'll admit the lyrics need some work over them, due to them being somewhat hypocritical. But get this, the song comes under the pop-rap genre and when it comes to rap, this is as good as it gets, if not the best. But what overcomes even THAT is the music, which is dark and happy at the same time. You might not like this, but I love this.
Best Part of the Song - The harmonization (Trust me, if this song was nothing but Abel crooning 'woah oh oh oh' and 'na na na na na', I would've thought it to be romantic. Also, this was the thing that ultimately made this grow on me.)
I used to like this. Abel's vocals are as smooth as ever, it fits with the theme of the album of partying and fame which everyone is behind of. But the worst part of this song comes after the 2nd chorus...
It's Demon Abel all over again, except this time, it is 1 year old. Which is even worse.
Best Part of the Song - You don't want to ask me that.
I used to like this but it wore down on me very quickly. I don't know why. Maybe it's because of the lyrics, which are very lazily written to be called 'simple'. Or the music seems very unnatural for a The Weeknd song. Like this is a club song but is still too dark to be a club song. And the story, oh God...
Is Abel evolving? I ask you, because I can't see it. Same theme, except for more dull. Like, come on.
Best Part of the Song - Dunno, mate.
So, this is the end. As far as I can see, this is the strongest 1/3rd of the album. Whether that is a good thing or a bad thing is up to you to decide. Signing out.
4. Party Monster
3. False Alarm