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2016 Billboard Music Awards - Show

The Weeknd graces the cover of VMAN’s Fall/Winter 2016 issue.

The “I Can’t Feel My Face” singer’s spread consists of photos of his face lit by different colored lights, and some shots are purposely blurred and smoky.

Interviews are rare for the 26-year-old, but they’re always chock full of information about where his musical journey is traveling next.

As Abęl Tesfaye gears up for his first post-pop release, he wants to continue pushing the boundaries of his sound. But he knows the journey won’t be an easy trek, and hopes his past influences inspire him once again.

Check out some of the highlights from The Weeknd’s latest interview below:

On his forthcoming album:

 “There are new inspirations on this album. The production feels aggressive but still sexy. The Smiths, Bad Brains, Talking Heads, Prince, and DeBarge play roles. We wrote it all in Los Angeles. I think it’ll be the best-sounding album I’ve ever done. It’s hard to label the sound because, when I first came out, nobody would label it R&B. I just want to keep pushing the envelope without it feeling forced.”

On his last album, Beauty Behind the Madness:

“Even though I’ve been putting out bodies of work for years, Beauty Behind the Madness felt like the beginning. My purpose is to make exciting music, and I feel like I’ll be doing that for the rest of my life, so there’s no pressure. Nothing is stopping me from doing what I love to do.”

On Black Lives Matter:

“I promised myself that I would never tweet or talk about politics and focus on the music, but I was just so bewildered that we lost more of our people to these senseless police shootings. It’s hard to wrap my head around the fact that there are people who can’t or won’t see what Black Lives Matter is trying to accomplish. I wish I could make music about politics. I feel like it’s such an art and a talent that I admire tremendously, but when I step into the studio I step out of the real world, and it’s therapeutic. It’s an escape, but recently it’s been very hard to ignore, and it’s also been very distracting. Maybe you’ll hear it in my voice, but it is not my forté.”

Read the rest of the interview here.

SOURCE: VMAN | IMAGE CREDIT: Getty, Twitter

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