“Dawn FM”: A New Horizon for The Weeknd


Sofia Felan

The Weeknd’s fifth studio album, featuring Tyler, The Creator and Lil Wayne, was ranked as the number three album in the world as of this week.

Gabriela Vega, Staff Writer

Album: Dawn FM
Artist: The Weeknd
Release Date: Jan. 7, 2022
Overall Rating: B+

Since his last album drop, The Weeknd had been teasing fans with music collabs and social media posts leading up to the release of his fifth studio album: “Dawn FM”. The wait is finally over and he delivered something that many people will love.

Song: “Take My Breath”
Rating: B+

Publicized about five months before the full record was released, this song has made a significant impact on this album. Although this track is unlike others on this record, I do not think that this is even close to being one of his best songs simply because it is a cookie-cutter rendition of The Weeknd’s signature sound.

He starts off this song by transitioning from the previous track, “How Do I Make You Love Me?”, to this one by adding a very psychedelic beat to it. The tempo of this song starts off pretty steady but soon starts to speed up and sound more up-beat. In this song, he talks about a girl and how his breath gets taken away every time he sees her, making references to multiple of his previous songs throughout the lyrics. It’s a groovy song that makes it almost impossible not to move your body when you hear it. Overall this is a great track with a lot of passion and emotion, but it sounds very plastic and basic, leaving listeners hungry for more originality from the artist.

Song: “Sacrifice”
Rating: A+

Being the second single in the album, “Sacrifice” pays homage to the rocky lifestyle that celebrities like The Weeknd live. Co-produced by Swedish House Mafia, The Weeknd tells a story about how he sacrificed his time and affection from a girl just to go live his own life and have fun. He reflects on the impact that spending time at his home town has on him and the way he views life. He paints a picture of his personality with his words and makes himself seem like a hedonist living life to the fullest.

[‘Take My Breath’] makes me feel like I’m in a whole other dimension. It’s so dope seeing what someone can do when they really put their mind to something,

— freshman Kenny Guzman

The main message of this song is that he is willing to go as far as sacrificing love for fame and fun. The Weeknd suggests that he feels terrible for his actions, but deep down inside he knows that he cannot stay with one girl at a time. At the beginning of the song you can hear a simple electric guitar riff that ends up being the backbone of the whole song, setting up the rock-pop tone for the rest of the track. This tune has such an appealing sound to it, with The Weeknd’s lower pitched voice and all of the instruments in the background. It follows an eighties and nineties funk theme that you can find across the album.

Song: “Out of Time”
Rating: A

The seventh track of the album called “Out of Time” shows a more melancholic and mature side of The Weeknd’s discography. He reminisces on his past relationships and suggests that he has no other choice but to move on from them. He sees that his most recent ex has a new boyfriend and realizes that he is “out of time” when it comes to making a move to get her back.

The musical backbone of this track is based on singer-songwriter Tomoko Arana’s song,“Midnight Pretenders”. This song is just so beautiful and radiates feelings of bliss even though the subject is sore. It has such a thick texture, yet simplistic sound that is refreshing because of The Weeknd’s tendency to produce more upbeat songs.

“He sings his heart out practically confessing his love to this girl that he knows he’ll never get back,” freshman Misha Khamvongsa said.

With his own spin on retro pop favorites, The Weeknd formulated a record filled with both party hits and even chill tracks for a night drive. The producer’s attention to stylistic detail was on point and although it has some sounds that we have heard from the Weeknd before, its originality brings so much to the table and raises the bar for his next projects. Though there were a few instances where The Weeknd played it safe, the variety and lyricism present throughout the album makes “Dawn FM” a must-listen off of his discography.