The Weeknd’s previous album After Hours was released right as the world was falling into the throes of the pandemic; after scrapping material that he felt was wallowing in the depression he was feeling at the time, Dawn FM arrives as a by-product of—and answer to—that turmoil. Here, he replaces woeful introspection with a bit of upbeat fantasy—the result of creatively searching for a way out of the claustrophobic reality of the previous two years.
Dawn FM is crafted in a similar fashion, complete with a DJ to set the tone for the segments within. “It’s time to walk into the light and accept your fate with open arms,” the host, voiced by Jim Carrey, declares on the opening track. “Scared? Don’t worry.”
Indeed, there is nothing to fear. The Weeknd packs the first half with euphoric bursts that include the Swedish House Mafia-assisted “How Do I Make You Love Me?” and “Sacrifice.” On the back half, he moves into the more serene waters of “Is There Someone Else?” and “Starry Eyes.” Despite the somewhat morose album cover, which reflects what many feel like as they wade through the seemingly endless purgatory of a life dictated by a virus, he’s aiming for something akin to hope in all of this gloom.
The Weeknd visuals for “Sacrifice”
About The Weeknd
The Weeknd took over pop music & culture on his own terms filtering R&B, Pop,& hip-hop through an ambitious widescreen lens. The multi-platinum 3X GRAMMY Award-winner has emerged as one of the most successful & significant artists of the modern era. 2012’s 3X platinum Trilogy collated 3 breakout mixtapes—House of Balloons, Thursday & Echoes of Silence—into his 1st chart-topping collection followed by his debut LP Kiss Land in 2013.
Two years later, “Earned It (Fifty Shades of Grey)” won “Best R&B Performance” & received an Academy Award nod for “Best Original Song” & 4X Platinum Beauty Behind The Madness won a GRAMMY for “Best Urban Contemporary Album.” In 2018, Starboy won the same award, making him the 1st artist ever to win twice. His 6-track project My Dear Melancholy marked his 3rd consecutive #1 bow on the Billboard Top 200, & “Pray For Me” with Kendrick Lamar was featured in the trailer for the Academy Award-winning Marvel film Black Panther.
In 2020 the 80’s-nostalgic track Blinding Lights became a worldwide sensation, igniting viral dance challenges across social media, peaking at #1 in 30+ countries & headlining Mercedes Benz EQC campaign. After Hours held the #1 spot on Billboard 200 for 4 consecutive weeks, marking his 4th #1 album & becoming the first to ever rank #1 on the Billboard 200, Hot 100, and Artist 100 simultaneously. After Hours is the #1 R&B streaming album of all time (followed by Starboy at #2).