In the music industry there are stars — acts with undeniable talent and a notable presence when they walk in the room. In a tier above that, we have superstars, who can barely maneuver the outside world without someone taking it as an opportunity for paparazzi or press.
With the release of his 2020 album After Hours (and the theatrics that ensued following its debut), The Weeknd managed to make his proverbial flame burn even brighter. While Starboy acknowledged his stardom and served as a veer into a new sonic direction, After Hours took those attributes into overdrive. The pacing of the project accelerated dramatically, the subject matter reflected his current situational dealings rather than his common reflection of past events, and the numbers followed suit in thematic fashion.
After Hours debuted atop the Billboard 200 charts, with the singles performing to an astronomical degree. The tracks “Heartless,” “Save Your Tears,” and “Blinding Lights” all reached number one on Billboard at some point in their lifespan. Of those, the latter two tracks mentioned have gone on to have never-before-seen success.
“Blinding Lights” was the highest charting and performing song of the year 2020, the same release year as the aforementioned After Hours album. The following year, “Save Your Tears” topped the charts and did just as well as Abel’s single from the year prior, being the biggest song of 2021. This made The Weeknd the first artist ever to have the two biggest songs in the world on back to back years.
With how well his newest release Dawn FM is doing, it isn’t unrealistic to think he could go for a trifecta.