We’re not too sure what to call the beautiful emerging genre filled with synth and distortion. We can tell you it’s led by Bon Iver, Kanye West, The Weeknd, Polica & newcomers (to the style) Pop Etc. We have this genre organized as “electropop” on Siafu Sounds, but using the term pop in reference to such technically savy music feels perverse.
Seemingly here to assauge our doubt, Pop Etc fits right at home and assures us this new genre rips pop influences from every conceivable genre with an album cover listing several and ending with an “ETC.” Pop Etc isn’t quite the lyrical heavyweight of their counterparts, but they make up for the relative lack of depth with infectiously sweet lyrics layered beautifully with production and instrumentals that fit right in.
Why ‘House of Balloons’ is free I can’t imagine because this is one of the better albums I have heard in years
Reviewing an album I can’t make any money off of is an awful hard task for me to stomach, but ‘House of Balloons’ by The Weeknd is EXACTLY the sort of album we started Siafu Sounds to spread the word about. Why ‘House of Balloons’ is free I can’t imagine because this is one of the better albums I have heard in years and I’d easily shell out the price of 3 normal albums for purchase.
Absolutely stellar in every way, the standout amongst these great qualities is a dark nightmare of a dreamscape painted by the album tone. As dark as the tone remains, it simultaneously is unwaveringly smooth and slow with richly tuned singing layered throughout to fall within the production rather than on top of it. Oozing with sex appeal and trance inducing grooves, ‘House of Balloons’ would be great to bring to a party but it is more the sort of music you’d want to play at an orgy than a dance hall.
The production is superb and leaves no doubt that ‘The Weeknd’ are future production superstars. There is a disjointed polytonality to the always present harmonies that plays absolute havoc with the emotions of the listener, who frequently find themselves simultaneously manic and high. The lyrics are likewise bipolar, one moment bordering on past-suicidal levels of pain and the next bordering on comedic. The later evoke the sort of confident delivery of obscenities usually reserved for the likes of Tenacious D and Flight of the Conchords . . . Which doesn’t diminish the music as a joke but rather display The Weeknd’s ability to make the absurd seem absurdly cool, as each ‘let me motherfuckin’ love you’ type of line brings an evangelic nod of the head. I’m not too concerned about telling you to to check out The Weeknd right now, because these guys are going to be unavoidable. But do yourself a huge favor and get acquainted now. ‘House of Balloons’ is available for free download at http://the-weeknd.com/