Black Atlass brings the Pain & Pleasure

by Jake Harrison

 Courtesy of The Artist

Courtesy of The Artist

After the success of his Fifty Shades Freed soundtrack single “Sacrifice” featuring Jessie Reyez, Black Atlass has been teasing his latest project Pain & Pleasure through a heavily stylized and cinematic campaign on Instagram. After all the hype and nearly a million streams on his lead single - the highly anticipated Pain & Pleasure album releases today, July 12th.

The opening track “Something Real” starts at a falsetto “If I can be something, I won’t be yours” swerving in and out of simp with sparse production and forward moving synths as he croons the invitation,“Baby let’s take a ride.”  The album includes eight tracks that matches the cinematic quality of the his cover art and album imagery alluding to neon glows and fast drives past highway signs the likes of which 2011’s Drive and 2017’s Baby Driver would envy. Songs like “Fantasy” and “If Only They Knew” pick up where The Weeknd’s Kiss Land and Halsey’s Badlands left off with their subtle trap beats and glitchy production leading to the furthering of a neo-futurist sexual landscape in R&B and Pop music in general. 

 Courtesy of The Artist

Courtesy of The Artist

Black Atlass has come along way from producing hits in his bedroom in Canada to signing with The Weeknd’s label under Republic, “XO”. He’s become a multi-hyphenate, not only embraced by his musical peers but fashion houses alike. His music has been featured in ad campaigns and on runways for Louis Vuitton and Saint Laurent. He has even found himself appearing alongside Kylie Jenner and Vince Staples in an Alexander Wang campaign.

He continues to produce and approach his music from the angle of “What would my favorite film directors do?” Black Atlass stands poised to bring R&B to another dimension in 2018 with Pain & Pleasure and invites us to come along for the ride.