• The Weeknd hinted at the release of the new album
  • He told his creative director to skip traditional album rollout procedures 
  • Earlier, he had told a media outlet the album was "complete" 

The Weeknd started the New Year with a teaser that signals the imminent release of his fifth studio album.

The “Blinding Lights” singer posted a photo of the sun shining from between some trees on Instagram, and wrote: “wake up at dawn tomorrow…”

The update comes a day after he shared a screenshot of a New Year’s text exchange between him and La Mar Taylor -- the co-founder of XO records and his creative director -- where they discussed the new album. In the screenshot, The Weeknd seems to give the green light to skip the traditional album rollout, and drop the entire album soon instead.

“Happy New Year brother! What we thinking ??” Taylor asked, to which The Weeknd replied: “Happy new year! Everything feels chaotic again. Music can heal and that feels more important than another album rollout. Let’s just drop the whole thing and enjoy it with the people… XO.”

The Canadian artist, whose real name is Abel Tesfaye, has been hinting at the follow-up to his 2020 album “After Hours” since August, following the release of the single “Take My Breath,” a funky disco-infused track that seems to signal the beginning of the singer’s new era.

See the video of "Take My Breath" below:

The Weeknd told Complex in October his new album “is complete," and he is just waiting for a few missing pieces.

“Only thing missing is a couple characters that are key to the narrative. Some people that are near and dear to me, some people that inspired my life as a child, and some that inspire me now. More to come in the following months,” he said.

He also told the outlet “some exciting features” will arrive prior to the release of the new album - his follow up to the hugely successful “After Hours” album in 2020, which featured hits like “ Blinding Lights," “Heartless” and “Save Your Tears.”

In November, “Blinding Lights” was crowned No. 1 on Billboard’s Greatest Of All Time Hot 100 songs after spending 90 weeks in different positions on the chart.

Less than a month later, his collaboration track with the late singer Aaliyah, titled “Poison,” came out ahead of the release of the late R&B singer’s posthumous album.

The Weeknd sampled Aaliyah’s “Rock The Boat” on his 2012 single “What You Need,” which was included in his compilation album, “Trilogy.”

The splashy half-time show, which this year featured The Weeknd, is a mainstay of the Super Bowl
The splashy half-time show, which this year featured The Weeknd, is a mainstay of the Super Bowl GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Patrick Smith