Quantcast

ON RECORDS:
BEAUTY AND
THE BADLANDS

The Weeknd and Halsey Will Dominate This Fall

 

Believe the hype: XO/Republic’s The Weeknd and Astralwerks/Capitol’s Halsey will have two of the biggest releases of the fall.

These two exciting newcomers, coming from different demos and about to meet in the middle, are true zeitgeist artists who are resonating with audiences and making noise in the marketplace. Both drop their full-length albums on 8/28, and both are blowing up in preorder.

The Weeknd already had an enormous Adult/Urban fan base before breaking into the mainstream with “Earned It,” his sultry smash from the Fifty Shades soundtrack. When that song flew to #1 at Pop radio, he was perfectly set up to break as an artist. “The Hills,” the first foray from his forthcoming Beauty Behind the Madness album (which became #1 in preorders at iTunes as soon as it went live), made serious inroads at both retail and radio. But it was with his next track, the grooving juggernaut “Can’t Feel My Face,” that he exploded. That track has soared into the Top 10 at Pop radio and sits at #1 at iTunes as of this writing (with “The Hills” now at #4). It’s also getting mad spins at Apple’s Beats 1.

With his gorgeous, sensuous voice and dark mystique—given a peerless pop sheen by master producer/co-writer Max Martin—The Weeknd (aka Canadian-born Abel Tesfaye) is catnip for adult music fans who adore his cool modern take on ’80s influences like Michael Jackson and The Police. Monte Lipman’s Team Republic, with its almighty promo squad marshaled by EVP Charlie Walk and lieutenant Gary Spangler, is just getting started with this monster. Estimates for Beauty’s first week at retail are in the neighborhood of 250k and could well grow.

Halsey, meanwhile, has been developing a massive army of young fans, led by teen and preteen girls, in a developing story that’s strongly reminiscent of Lorde’s ascent to stardom. The New Jersey-bred 20-year-old’s real name is Ashley Frangipane—believe it—and Halsey is an anagram of her first name (and also a street name in Brooklyn; she identifies far more with NYC than with the Garden State).

Now her track “New Americana” is taking her over the top and driving major sales. First came a Beats 1 lovefest for an unofficial version of the track; presenter Zane Lowe praised it as a likely #1, commenting, “The anticipation building around the artist… is enormous.” Then KTCL Denver’s Nerf gave the official version its world premiere. Big spins on L.A.’s 98.7 and KROQ followed, and Halsey’s Badlands exploded in preorders.

“We are the new Americana/High on legal marijuana/Raised on Biggie and Nirvana,” goes the song’s chorus. If you pull up one of many YouTube clips of Halsey performing the song you’ll hear her increasingly giant crowds singing every single word.

Look for Steve Barnett, Greg Thompson and Team Capitol to break this one wide open, with a Lorde-ly potential for the blue-haired siren to increase the size of her nation of followers exponentially.

Both of these artists also become instant Grammy possibilities, the Weeknd for both Album of the Year and Record/Song (“Can’t Feel My Face”) and Halsey for Best New Artist and Record/Song (“New Americana”).

Also expected to be blazing this summer, while we listen to these two breakouts: copious amounts of legal marijuana.

 

1 TRENDING TOPIC:
OLIVIA’S LANE
Talk about an overnight sensation. (4/21a)
PRINCE, FIVE YEARS GONE: SOME PURPLE MUSINGS
His death continues to reverberate. (4/21a)
.PAAK PACTS WITH WARNER CHAPPELL
Anderson goes global. (4/21a)
U.K. LIVE BIZ ASKS FOR CONCERT CONTINGENCY FUND
A little help, please. (4/21a)
BLACK MUSIC MONTH FOREVER
We've got a plan. (4/21a)
RHYTHM, BLUES AND THE FUTURE
The musical tapestry we know as R&B.
WHO'S NEXT?
Predicting the next big catalog deal.
JUST THE VAX, MA'AM
Once we all get vaccinated, how long before we can party?
WORLDWIDE GROOVE
How is globalization bringing far-flung territories into the musical mainstream?
Advertisement
 Email

 First Name

 Last Name

 Company

 Country
CAPTCHA code
Captcha: (type the characters above)