Lilian Min
Updated July 29, 2015

When The Weeknd first broke out into the music world, he was a bit of a wildcard. His songs showcased a singular voice, but his subject material was thought to guarantee his genre star status. But lo and behold — years later, Abel Tesfaye is a superstar collaborator (with the likes of Ariana Grande and Drake) and also a bonafide solo act of his own. Now, his poppiest song to date, “Can’t Feel My Face,” has an absolutely fire video to match.

Currently resting at #2 on the Billboard Hot 100, “Can’t Feel My Face” has the verve of “Uptown Funk” or current Maroon 5, the layered harmonies of contemporaries like Miguel, with the dark digital atmosphere of electronica acts like Hot Chip or Röyksopp. It also sounds like the audio personification of the snapping gangsters in West Side Story.

Produced by Max Martin, the pop genius who’s behind some of music’s greatest hits of all time (“…Baby One More Time,” “Teenage Dream,” and “Shake It Off,” for starters), “Can’t Feel My Face” is an allusion to women and drugs, The Weeknd’s favorite subject material, but he’s toned down his language for what is, almost improbably so, a family-friendly Weeknd hit. The song is seemingly engineered to make you dance, and dance Tesfaye does in the song’s video.

What starts off as a particularly impassioned karaoke to a flat crowd (that said, The Weeknd would probably kill on “Lip Sync Battle”) takes a fiery turn, giving a whole new meaning to the phrase “This song is flames!” Watch it below, and just try not to boogie along.

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