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Faisal

The Weeknd

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Hated everything I've heard by them so far.

-10

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Dopeness

Frank Ocean-ish. With 808's.

Not as good or cohesive as Nostalgia, Ultra.

-5

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Downloading based on MK's review.

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its alright

its very 'of the moment' so its a tad easy to judge as you'll just end up comparing it to Frank Ocean

ill reserve judgement till i hear a lil' more

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nothing like frank ocean imo...

tis nice tho...

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Gets a thumbs up from me.

However I agree with

its very 'of the moment' so its a tad easy to judge as you'll just end up comparing it to Frank Ocean

ill reserve judgement till i hear a lil' more

been listening to both guys all week tbh.

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its alright

its very 'of the moment' so its a tad easy to judge as you'll just end up comparing it to Frank Ocean

ill reserve judgement till i hear a lil' more

good article from the guardian in this vain...

It probably counts as some sort of triple whammy of music-critic idiocy: a sweeping proclamation about an entire genre, a blundering dismissal of that same genre, and hyping up an unremarkable new act after being taken in by their marketing strategy. Last week, the music press was abuzz with R&B talk – and, as often seems to be the way with indie-leaning critics, getting it embarrassingly wrong. Sean Fennessey's declaration in the Village Voice that R&B has "changed again" was one of many pieces falling over themselves to praise a new, self-released mixtape by the anonymous collective the Weeknd as a brave new direction for the genre. In a telling show of double standards, though, Fennessey went on to dismiss the efforts of "commercial" R&B based almost entirely on their sales figures, rather than their music.

The disproportionate attention accorded to the Weeknd is reflective of an attitude towards R&B that just won't seem to die: the further away it gets from its formalist roots, the more praise is lavished on it. Conversely, those artists catering to the genre's core audience are ignored or dismissed. The former is not synonymous with being inventive or interesting. The Weeknd are thoroughly unremarkable: in terms of both songcraft and conveying emotion, they are painfully inadequate. The hood signifiers ladled into the lyrics sound forced and contrived, not least because the singer sounds bored out of his skull. The addition of vaguely lo-fi chillwave textures are a lazy way of connoting darkness – but the Weeknd's sound isn't too far removed from arrangements that have become commonplace in R&B. It's like a particularly shallow take on a Trey Songz mixtape.

Only a fool could think the Weeknd the most exciting thing to happen to R&B in 2011. Just the first quarter has seen several high-quality releases emerge from unexpected directions. Remember Kandi, for instance? She was the songwriter behind TLC's No Scrubs, Destiny's Child's Bug-a-Boo and Bills, Bills, Bills, and Pink's There You Go. But her own solo career failed to work out, and she all but disappeared for the best part of a decade. Her return to the spotlight came via a spot on a reality-TV show, The Real Housewives of Atlanta – in which an American friend informs me Kandi is "the lone sane person surrounded by insane, attention-seeking vacuums of self-delusion". Nonetheless, it paved the way for her second album, Kandi Koated: an understated but powerful collection of righteous, grown-woman, single-mother real talk that hits home thanks to Kandi's eye for specifics and lyrical twists. When she sings "no fly-by-night romance, I want substance" on Give It to You, it's not framed as a demand to her man, but as a caution to her own lust. The album reaches its peak with the track Leroy Jones, a tribute to Kandi's stepfather that also functions as a warning to suitors that, like him, they have to accept her daughter as part of the relationship.

Another unexpected comeback was made by the British singer Marsha Ambrosius, formerly half of the neo-soul duo Floetry. Late Nights and Early Mornings is her debut solo album and first official material in six years. Its lead single opened with the wickedly barbed kiss-off, "Hope she cheats on you with a basketball player / Hope that she Kim Kardashianed her way up"; Ambrosius followed it with a video explicitly confronting homophobia within the black community. Within the album, she finds her forte in essaying a sequence of sinuous, sensual Prince homages. All in all, it's an impressive statement of artistic intent. Fennessey, however, appeared to pay it no further attention than noting the presence of a Portishead cover, and therefore dismissing it completely.

Ambrosius may have scored an unlikely Billboard No 2 hit with her album, but true R&B has been commercially beleaguered of late, with the charts dominated by the standardised thump of cheap Eurohouse. Maybe that's why two elder statesmen of urban music have taken it upon themselves to explicitly call for a genre regrouping. On Lost In Your Love, R Kelly sings, "I wanna bring the love songs back to the radio". On its parent album, Love Letter, it is exactly that vibe he mines: the album is full of classicist balladry and heartfelt vocals. Meanwhile, Diddy followed his epic concept album Last Train to Paris with a free mixtape of R&B reworks and new tracks on Valentine's Day, Love Love Vs Hate Love. It's mostly produced by a new name, Rob Holladay; the way Holladay drapes lushly textured synthwork around Diddy's originals, like a lighter version of The-Dream, marks him out as an exciting new talent.

Diddy and R Kelly's female proteges have also been making significant moves. Dawn Richard, a member of the girl group Danity Kane before she became Diddy's sidekick in his Dirty Money trio, has also released a free mixtape this year, The Prelude to a Tell Tale Heart. The title is a reference to the Edgar Allan Poe story, in which the narrator declares that "what you mistake for madness is but overacuteness of the senses". Poe's sentence could usefully stand in as the R&B genre's overall raison d'etre, and is one that Richard has taken to heart as she picks her way through the insanity of codependency and power-play amid broken-down electronics, dramatic military tattoos and her own distorted, filtered voices on tracks such as Broken Record and Bulletproof.

Meanwhile, if R Kelly is bringing back love songs, then K Michelle, the Tennessee singer he has signed to his label, is bringing back honest-to-god emoting. She has the same rawness of Mary J Blige in her prime, but K Michelle is more likely to burn your house down or punch you in the mouth than just wallow in her pain. Her latest single, How Many Times?, is a triumph of sheer, cathartic sangin'.

On the Rob Holladay remix of Yeah Yeah You Would, Diddy defines R&B as: "Singing those songs that express that emotion that come from deep in your soul, in the pit of your chest – that profound love, that sh*t." The genre emphasises personality, narrative, songcraft and singing ability for good reason: to best convey this marriage of the physical and the emotional. Focusing on R&B only when it has a contrived "weird" or "arty" angle, as per the Weeknd, is to fail to adequately engage with its form and its values.

It's telling that the most striking track of 2011 for R&B audiences is a simple acoustic ballad. Like the Weeknd, Timothy Bloom's debut single, 'Til the End of Time, emerged seemingly from nowhere, accompanied by an equally eye-catching (and NSFW) video. The production is tactile and beautiful – understated guitar strums and brushed drums – but it's the tour de force performances of Bloom and guest vocalist V Bozeman that make it so engrossing, their voices intertwining until they're wrapped up in each other. It's an intimacy and physicality that the Weeknd could not hope to match.

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judgement in; the ep is sick!!!!!

this and 'the party & the after party' are my fav tunes

http://vimeo.com/20956281

btw for anyone thats into this type of stuff this guy called 'How to Dress Well' has a similar sound along with Nicholas Jaar who just dropped his first album

i'll update with links, when i find!

edit: article was a load of sh*t. from time 'last train to paris' is referred to as "epic" i stopped reading.

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its alright

its very 'of the moment' so its a tad easy to judge as you'll just end up comparing it to Frank Ocean

ill reserve judgement till i hear a lil' more

good article from the guardian in this vain...

It probably counts as some sort of triple whammy of music-critic idiocy: a sweeping proclamation about an entire genre, a blundering dismissal of that same genre, and hyping up an unremarkable new act after being taken in by their marketing strategy. Last week, the music press was abuzz with R&B talk – and, as often seems to be the way with indie-leaning critics, getting it embarrassingly wrong. Sean Fennessey's declaration in the Village Voice that R&B has "changed again" was one of many pieces falling over themselves to praise a new, self-released mixtape by the anonymous collective the Weeknd as a brave new direction for the genre. In a telling show of double standards, though, Fennessey went on to dismiss the efforts of "commercial" R&B based almost entirely on their sales figures, rather than their music.

The disproportionate attention accorded to the Weeknd is reflective of an attitude towards R&B that just won't seem to die: the further away it gets from its formalist roots, the more praise is lavished on it. Conversely, those artists catering to the genre's core audience are ignored or dismissed. The former is not synonymous with being inventive or interesting. The Weeknd are thoroughly unremarkable: in terms of both songcraft and conveying emotion, they are painfully inadequate. The hood signifiers ladled into the lyrics sound forced and contrived, not least because the singer sounds bored out of his skull. The addition of vaguely lo-fi chillwave textures are a lazy way of connoting darkness – but the Weeknd's sound isn't too far removed from arrangements that have become commonplace in R&B. It's like a particularly shallow take on a Trey Songz mixtape.

Only a fool could think the Weeknd the most exciting thing to happen to R&B in 2011. Just the first quarter has seen several high-quality releases emerge from unexpected directions. Remember Kandi, for instance? She was the songwriter behind TLC's No Scrubs, Destiny's Child's Bug-a-Boo and Bills, Bills, Bills, and Pink's There You Go. But her own solo career failed to work out, and she all but disappeared for the best part of a decade. Her return to the spotlight came via a spot on a reality-TV show, The Real Housewives of Atlanta – in which an American friend informs me Kandi is "the lone sane person surrounded by insane, attention-seeking vacuums of self-delusion". Nonetheless, it paved the way for her second album, Kandi Koated: an understated but powerful collection of righteous, grown-woman, single-mother real talk that hits home thanks to Kandi's eye for specifics and lyrical twists. When she sings "no fly-by-night romance, I want substance" on Give It to You, it's not framed as a demand to her man, but as a caution to her own lust. The album reaches its peak with the track Leroy Jones, a tribute to Kandi's stepfather that also functions as a warning to suitors that, like him, they have to accept her daughter as part of the relationship.

Another unexpected comeback was made by the British singer Marsha Ambrosius, formerly half of the neo-soul duo Floetry. Late Nights and Early Mornings is her debut solo album and first official material in six years. Its lead single opened with the wickedly barbed kiss-off, "Hope she cheats on you with a basketball player / Hope that she Kim Kardashianed her way up"; Ambrosius followed it with a video explicitly confronting homophobia within the black community. Within the album, she finds her forte in essaying a sequence of sinuous, sensual Prince homages. All in all, it's an impressive statement of artistic intent. Fennessey, however, appeared to pay it no further attention than noting the presence of a Portishead cover, and therefore dismissing it completely.

Ambrosius may have scored an unlikely Billboard No 2 hit with her album, but true R&B has been commercially beleaguered of late, with the charts dominated by the standardised thump of cheap Eurohouse. Maybe that's why two elder statesmen of urban music have taken it upon themselves to explicitly call for a genre regrouping. On Lost In Your Love, R Kelly sings, "I wanna bring the love songs back to the radio". On its parent album, Love Letter, it is exactly that vibe he mines: the album is full of classicist balladry and heartfelt vocals. Meanwhile, Diddy followed his epic concept album Last Train to Paris with a free mixtape of R&B reworks and new tracks on Valentine's Day, Love Love Vs Hate Love. It's mostly produced by a new name, Rob Holladay; the way Holladay drapes lushly textured synthwork around Diddy's originals, like a lighter version of The-Dream, marks him out as an exciting new talent.

Diddy and R Kelly's female proteges have also been making significant moves. Dawn Richard, a member of the girl group Danity Kane before she became Diddy's sidekick in his Dirty Money trio, has also released a free mixtape this year, The Prelude to a Tell Tale Heart. The title is a reference to the Edgar Allan Poe story, in which the narrator declares that "what you mistake for madness is but overacuteness of the senses". Poe's sentence could usefully stand in as the R&B genre's overall raison d'etre, and is one that Richard has taken to heart as she picks her way through the insanity of codependency and power-play amid broken-down electronics, dramatic military tattoos and her own distorted, filtered voices on tracks such as Broken Record and Bulletproof.

Meanwhile, if R Kelly is bringing back love songs, then K Michelle, the Tennessee singer he has signed to his label, is bringing back honest-to-god emoting. She has the same rawness of Mary J Blige in her prime, but K Michelle is more likely to burn your house down or punch you in the mouth than just wallow in her pain. Her latest single, How Many Times?, is a triumph of sheer, cathartic sangin'.

On the Rob Holladay remix of Yeah Yeah You Would, Diddy defines R&B as: "Singing those songs that express that emotion that come from deep in your soul, in the pit of your chest – that profound love, that sh*t." The genre emphasises personality, narrative, songcraft and singing ability for good reason: to best convey this marriage of the physical and the emotional. Focusing on R&B only when it has a contrived "weird" or "arty" angle, as per the Weeknd, is to fail to adequately engage with its form and its values.

It's telling that the most striking track of 2011 for R&B audiences is a simple acoustic ballad. Like the Weeknd, Timothy Bloom's debut single, 'Til the End of Time, emerged seemingly from nowhere, accompanied by an equally eye-catching (and NSFW) video. The production is tactile and beautiful – understated guitar strums and brushed drums – but it's the tour de force performances of Bloom and guest vocalist V Bozeman that make it so engrossing, their voices intertwining until they're wrapped up in each other. It's an intimacy and physicality that the Weeknd could not hope to match.

Great article, sums up exactly how I feel about all this "hip" r&b type stuff that's around just now.

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The Morning is a big tune.

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The Morning is a big tune.

Agreed, but i prefer the pitched down version

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This is some decent stuff.

I like House Of Ballons, should be longer.

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Feeling them

but

its defintely like a not as good frank ocean

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Rah didn't see this

Should've searched before I clicked NEW TOPIC

I really like this, especially Wicked Games and The Morning

Think I kinda prefer his voice to Oceans in some instances

Reminds me more of Theophilus London than FO really

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Gonna give this an extensive listen when i finish work but on quick listen it sounds good.

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Took me ages to get past the 1st song "High For This"

Its good, nothing like Ocean

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that is absolutely sick far a fan video, or it official?

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not sureeeee

comments say its not official and apparently they was never gonna be an "official" one

but this will prob be better than any official video.

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Wow

Totally captures the sound perfectly

Best fan vid I've seen for a long time

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