If the overriding mental image of The Weeknd’s all-conquering ‘After Hours’ is that of the dizzying illuminated surroundings of ‘Blinding Lights’’ visual counterpart, then ‘Dawn FM’ - essentially a conceptual counterpart to that record - would probably be found careering through an endless, fluorescent-lit road tunnel. It’s a masterclass in mood creation. Abel Tesfaye’s skill in fusing ‘70s and ‘80s funk-adjacent sounds into 21st century pop canon is nothing new, but here, between the spoken-word interludes courtesy of Jim Carrey and Quincy Jones, the smooth synths of ‘Here We Go Again’, or the sci-fi dystopian touches of ‘Every Angel Is Terrifying’, it’s so spot-on as to imagine Max Headroom could interrupt at any given moment. And the car we’re in is headed to Hawkins, Indiana. While ‘I Heard You’re Married’, complete with period-feature fade out, has a damn good go at slow-paced banger, the jewel in ‘Dawn FM’’s crown is undoubtedly single ‘Take My Breath’, which channels Giorgio Moroder via Daft Punk, pulls itself out and back in like an extended ‘80s 12” mix, and yet couldn’t have been recorded and released by anyone else.
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The track is taken from January’s ‘Dawn FM’ album.
“i wonder… did you know you’re experiencing a new trilogy?”
His new album, ‘Dawn FM’, lands on Friday.
“A new sonic universe from the mind of The Weeknd’.