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The Weeknd releases new single, 'Often'

The Weeknd releases new single, 'Often'
Abel Tesfaye, a.k.a. the Weeknd, performs at the Coachella Music and Arts Festival in Indio in April. (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

On The Weeknd's new single, Abel Tesfaye starts the song by singing "I usually love sleeping all alone."

Who is he kidding?

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Tesfaye has one of the most nihilistically sexed-up catalogs in contemporary R&B (and that's saying something). His new single "Often" fits into that history -- it's typically narcotized slow-jam brightened up by some Kanye-ish pitch-shifted vocals samples.

Listen to it here (but do note its typically Weeknd-ish racy lyrics).

"Often" is actually more of a major-key mood for him though, and recalls his citymate Drake with its mix of boastfulness and a tender delivery. Sure, he's inviting a conquest to bring her friend over for an evening, but compared with some prior tunes, this request feels almost gentlemanly by comparison.

Since last year's "Kiss Land" and a well-regarded amphitheater tour, Tesfaye's project has been fairly mum when it comes to new material. "Often" might be a look at where his sound is going -- a little stranger in the production, a little more pillow talk in the vocals.

That's not exactly a way to start sleeping alone more, though.

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