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  • Live Review: The Weeknd Casts a Spell on The Hollywood Bowl

    Fri, 10 Oct 2014 12:08:42

    Live Review: The Weeknd Casts a Spell on The Hollywood Bowl - By ARTISTdirect.com editor in chief Rick Florino...

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    "I'm so bad," The Weeknd admitted to the sold out Hollywood Bowl last night during the Los Angeles stop of his "The King of the Fall" tour.

    The stark production with a lone spotlight on him during "Enemy" made everyone feel the same way. There's nothing quite like being "bad" with The Weeknd. Throughout the set, he stood in front of a towering video screen only trumped in scope by the dramatic heights of his vocal range. It didn't feel like a show so much as an experience predicated on the raw talent of one of this generation's most powerful, potent, and passionate voices. He transforms sex into ethereal futurism the same way that classic science fiction such as Blade Runner does. That became apparent on a hazy and hypnotic rendition of the Kiss Land standout "Love in the Sky". Meanwhile, on "The Professional", he fired off each note with the precision of Jean Reno in the movie of the same name. Bolstered by the black-and-white visuals on the screen, the show stood more akin to a movie.

    The pleading on "What You Need" cast an enigmatic spell that got the primarily female audience chanting along. Throughout this ride, Abel Tesfaye's voice transfixed at every turn, and he even let a few smiles through while he played air guitar along to a soaring lead or two. Each element converged into a sensory onslaught that'd make Rick Deckard proud. He's more than just "The King of the Fall"; he's "The King of R&B".

    One of the best shows that you can possibly see, do yourself a favor and make sure you catch him. You'll feel good for being so bad.

    -Rick Florino
    10.10.14


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