One of the few detractions I’ve heard about Canadian indie R&B upstart The Weeknd (and there have been very few to speak of), is that his style cops certain elements from the glamour-damaged aesthetics of The-Dream. While Terius Nash’s knack for melodies, exquisite beats, and crooning vocals certainly can be drawn to Abel Tesfaye as an obvious influence, The Weeknd has gone down much darker territory than The-Dream’s love-hate relationship with himself, often conveying a much more regretful and damaged persona. In SAT analogy terms, The-Dream is to Morrissey as The Weeknd is to Ian Curtis.
That being said, Nash obviously agrees with those few detractors, as he recently spoke out at a concert about certain “fake ass motherfuckers” copying him. Tesfaye, likewise, seems to realize this as well considering his quickness to respond to Nash’s vague, non-specific comment. Tesfaye opened his salvo by calling Nash, a “ham burglar lookin’ ass nigga…,” then following it up with the defenses, “all i need are my brothers and my fans… fuck the bullshit” and “i was raised old fashioned, you get at me, i get at you… ain’t no sideways shit about it…” He also took a jab at Nash’s street cred with “this nigga is so hood, he thinks my name is the weekender…”
The rest came the morning after a second New York show where Nash further went on to wave a white flag, saying “Enough to share the success with any man Worthy! LoveCult! #TheLoveGang” along with several other pep talky/complimentary things.
Will this quick rush to a détente perhaps lead to a collaboration? Probably not — either way, a song with these two these two guys would probably be a case of too many cooks. What’s most interesting is how touchy and self-aware Tesfaye seems to be considering Nash was not at all specific about whom he was talking about. The ever mysterious Weeknd may be not be as impenetrable as his cloudy trilogy of mixtapes might have one think after all.