"XO / The Host" and "Initiation"--which really function as one long song--is the best part of his discography. The way he depicts the character in those two songs, if we assume the girl in "XO" is the one who partakes in what goes on in "Initiation," which seems reasonable,--the way he lets us see someone literally fall apart in front of our eyes is haunting in the most perfect way. That's what brings me back to Echoes of Silence. It's inarguably the darkest of the three mixtapes, and that middle portion particularly is gut-wrenching.
Yep. There were some genuinely harrowing moments on Trilogy that made me think of dead-eyed party going corpses; nothing here does that for me. It feels so safe. Like it's a facade he's trying to put on to maintain his sense of self now that he's been removed from what was his natural environment.
I was originally much harsher on the production but I definitely was letting my opinion be colored by Tesfaye's stupidity. There's a lot of solid production on here that should have gone elsewhere.