The Weeknd is having a great year. He’s gotten much-deserved love from major artists like Lorde and Drake, he’s captured the attention of a mainstream audience with his pop-infused “Can’t Feel My Face,” and he’s dropping his fifth album, Beauty Behind the Madness, later this week.
While headlining Billboard’s Hot 100 Festival yesterday, The Weeknd blended his best known music — “High For This,” “Wicked Games,” “Often,” — with some new. He played “Prisoner,” his Lana Del Rey collaboration, and it has all of the mood, sex, and darkness you hoped it might.
The Weeknd played his hit “Can’t Feel My Face,” as well as “The Hills” and “Earned It.” He also covered Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack-mate Beyonce, and performed a version of “Drunk In Love.”
The Weeknd is having arguably the biggest year in his career yet, and the best part about it is how natural it feels for him. He doesn’t seem to have sacrificed any part of the singer who first came onto the scene four years ago with House of Balloons. He’s undoubtedly more in the public’s eye now — via modeling gigs and outings with rumored girlfriend Bella Hadid, but The Weeknd is still the same Weeknd you first fell in love with.
Stay tuned for the release of Beauty Behind the Madness later this week.