The Weeknd has quite a bit to prove on his proper debut album, Kiss Land. His mixtapes received many an accolade and this release is his chance to prove it wasn’t all a fluke. With falsetto in tow, the artist also known as Abel Tesfaye delivers a compelling, moody listen that fans will revel in.
Weaving his emotive voice amongst the decadently dark production, the overall sound of Kiss Land evokes a vibe similar to that of fellow emo/ambient -soulsters Rochelle Jordan and Jhene’ Aiko. Lyrically speaking however, we have a confessional from the perspective of a man who finds himself drowning in the excesses of fame.
Groupies, sex and drugs are the order of the day. The stunning ‘Professional’ is an ode of sorts to the lifestyle of a call-girl, whilst ‘Love in the Sky’ sees Tesfaye combating his lows by getting high. The title-track is both seductive and ominous, flaunting a beat that brings back memories of early Three 6 Mafia and ‘Wanderlust’ provides a bounce in its arrangement that adds a spark to the proceedings.
All angst aside, The Weeknd’s Michael Jackson-esque timbre and the sombre element it thrives in work together to propel a record that draws the listener into its murky melodrama. Introspective and at times straddling the line between sleazy and seductive, Tesfaye’s famous people problems are certainly interesting enough to make Kiss Land one of the stand outs in the world of R&B.
Step into that world of contemporary R&B with twelve-tracks of Kiss Land.
Kiss Land is out now on iTunes.