The Weeknd is riding high at the moment, currently cruising towards his second No. 1 album with the newly released Starboy. For his oldest fans it may all be a little surreal, watching the murky, unknown Canadian singer who outright refused to post pictures of himself now performing his cocaine anthems on daytime television for an audience of millions.
But, alas, there was Abel Tesfaye on The Ellen Show, surrounded by lasers like that iconic scene from Entrapment, belting out lyrics about his girlfriend cutting ivory into skinny pieces and cleaning it up with her face, all while he makes snorting gestures. After blowing kisses to the audience Abel exchanges “I Love Yous” with Ellen and it’s clear, this ain’t 2011’s The Weeknd anymore folks.
Not that that’s necessarily a bad thing. Abel is a stadium status star for a reason, and much of that was built on the back of the legacy House of Balloons, Thursday and Echoes of Silence created and the fanbase that trilogy of mixtapes cultivated.
The Weeknd isn’t an entirely new artist, but what’s apparent is his transformation from indie darling shrouded in mystery to daytime television performing superstar is complete. As Ellen Degeneres noted, before the performance, it was his first time performing “Starboy” on daytime television, but it certainly won’t be his last.