The Weeknd's On Fire

The Weeknd's On Fire

THERE IS NO CHANCE OF EXTINGUISHING THE WEEKND'S RISE

THERE IS NO CHANCE OF EXTINGUISHING THE WEEKND'S RISE

Text: Ian David Monroe

Yesterday, in a feature title for the New York Times, John Caramanica asked, “Can The Weeknd Turn Himself Into the Biggest Pop Star in the World?,” and today, with the release of his music video for track “Can’t Feel My Face,” it seems he’s not ready to take it all that seriously. Or, at the very least, he’s willing to have fun as he ascends. The Grant Singer-directed flick (Singer also directed the artist’s last video for “The Hills”) sees Tesfaye giving his best Michael Jackson impression to a tough club crowd who is quick to ignore him, or hurl drinks onto the stage. He's not bothered, and keeps on dancing. Ironically, it’s the Max Martin-produced track he’s singing that’s most likely to surpass his other chart toppers, “Often,” “Earned It,” and “The Hills,” and launch him into international stardom.

Something to consider, though, is that Grant Singer’s videos are undeniably full of hypnotic visuals, but his talent lies in the subtext. “The Hills” saw Abel, or likely the spirit of Abel, stumble right into the hellish den of The Mau Maus frontman Rick Wilder, and then the scene is cut. Wilder returns again in “Can’t Feel My Face,” lights a cigarette, and then lights The Weeknd on fire. It’s only after being set aflame that the singer wins the enthusiasm of his formerly dreary audience. Has The Weeknd sold his soul to the Devil for fame? If so, it’s working.

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