The story of The Weeknd is folklore by now, but you may not realize how much of the first mixtape, House of Balloons, is cribbed from other artists. I don’t think it diminishes the record, but you probably have no idea how much Beach House you are listening to in the background. House of Balloons is the first of 3 mixtapes that dropped in 2010 under the moniker of The Weeknd, all 3 later released as the remastered / repackaged Trilogy.
“House of Balloons/Glass Table Girls”
Samples “Happy House” by Siouxsie and the Banshees. “This is… a Happy House…” etc, listen for it:
Stuffed in the background is this track from 1980:
“The Party & The After Party”
The first half of the track happens over a sped-up version of Beach House’s “Master of None” from their 2006 self-titled debut. Here’s The Weeknd sampling it, I was floored how much of this track is based on it:
And here’s the original Beach House version:
“Loft Music” features another sped-up, flanged-out Beach House track, from 2008’s Devotion, “Gila.”
Here’s the original, which inspires the vibe of the whole tune at double speed:
This track features sped-up, warped bits of the Cocteau Twins track “Cherry Coloured Funk” from their record Heaven or Las Vegas, also the name of a track on The Weeknd’s mixtape, Thursday. It’s the first thing you hear:
“What You Need”
The version which ultimately ended up on Trilogy is devoid of “Rock the Boat” by Aaliyah, but the original mixtape version has excerpts:
There was some beef from Jeremy Rose (the producer of “What You Need,” “The Party & The After Party,” and “Loft Music”) about not getting proper credit for his role on the record. Ironically, 2 of those tunes are the ones which sample Beach House the most.