Covering the Bronco Nation.

The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media

Covering the Bronco Nation.

The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media

Covering the Bronco Nation.

The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media

UEFA Euros Tournament Predictions
Final Blog
Advertisement
UEFA Euros Tournament Predictions
Final Blog
Advertisement

Review: Drake – More Life

Drakes follow-up to 2016s Views released on March 18, 2017
Photo by OVO Sound, Young Money, Republic
Drake’s follow-up to 2016’s Views released on March 18, 2017

Toronto rapper/singer/meme Aubrey “Drake” Graham has become the biggest name in hip-hop for the past three or four years. Through his Beats One show, OVO Sound Radio, Aubrey returns with More Life, a new “playlist” with a star-studded guestlist. I’ve voiced out against Drake in the past. I thought his 2016 album Views was a long-winded mess with a few highlights which you can see in my review.

Luckily for fans of Drake, More Life improves on Views, albeit not by much.

The Album starts with “Free Smoke,” one of the best Drake openers since “Legend” on If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late. A pitched-up sample of Hiatus Kaiyote’s “Building A Ladder” opens the song as Drake gives us some memorable lines like “I wanna move to Dubai/So I don’t never have to kick it with none of you guys,” and “I drunk text J-Lo/Old number, so it bounce back.” It’s a glimpse of the classic Drake that gave us Nothing Was The Same and If You’re Reading This.

“No Long Talk” brings the same intensity and energy as the first track while UK rapper Giggs helps him out. This song really kicks off Drake’s use of British slang and culture seen in the UK’s grime scene, similar to his use of Jamaican culture on Views. Fortunately (or unfortunately), the Jamacian influence doesn’t go anywhere.

As far as Drake’s Jamacian dancehall tracks go (think “One Dance” or “Controlla”), “Passionfruit” is up there with some of his best. It’s reserved, mellow, simplistic aesthetic make for a surefire summer hit. The next four songs don’t fair as well as “Passionfruit,” and honestly, I felt like I was hearing the same song over and over and over again.

His song “4422” features the always beautiful voice of London R&B singer Sampha adds as an intermission to the second half of More Life — seriously, go listen to his new album Process. It’s fantastic. “Gyalchester” has one of the best beats of the album, but the performance by Drake seems pretty tired and phoned in, other than him saying “I don’t take naps/Me and the money are way too attached to go and do that.” The “Skepta Interlude” is pretty much what the title says: an interlude by UK grime rapper Skepta. It sounds like something that could’ve fit on Skepta’s 2016 album Konnichiwa, but when your playlist/mixtape/album already has a runtime of an hour and 22 minutes, it’s time to start thinking of cutting out some of this filler.

“Portland” is the clear highlight of the album. With both this song and Future’s “Mask Off” having flute-heavy samples, 2017 must be the year of the flute. Like “Mask Off,” “Portland” is a banger with Drake bringing in Migos member Quavo and Houston rapper Travis Scott. Quavo is unbelievable at doing song hooks, and the normally hit-or-miss Travis Scott brings his A-game as well. “Sacrifices” continues the great features, with 2 Chainz and the always-excellent Young Thug backing Drake up. He continues his stellar braggadocio (“40 got house on the lake, I ain’t know we had a lake/She complainin’ how I’m late, I ain’t know it was a date”) and 2 Chainz and Young Thug both deliver subdued but effective verses.

“KMT” is the most controversial track on the album with Drake allegedly stealing the triplet flow recently popularized by XXXTENTACION’s “Look At Me!” This isn’t Drake’s first time being accused of stealing, but the verse still sounds great, stolen or not. “Lose You” reminds me of something that would be on Nothing Was The Same with it’s reserved, piano-driven beat and Drake switching from rapping to singing. “Can’t Have Everything”’s hard-hitting instrumental leads way for Drake to deliver a gauntlet of rhymes. While I hope this song doesn’t end up being forgotten, it’ll most likely be remembered for the voicemail by Drake’s mother that ends it, telling her son “When others go low, we go high.”

With rumors swirling of a collaboration album between Drake and Kanye West, “Glow,” which features Weststead, we get a singing Kanye — which has never, ever been his strong point. Outside of the singing, we get boring lines by Kanye that makes me hope this album never happens. Hopefully this song is a throwaway from an album coming in the future.

We then get “Since Way Back,” featuring PARTYNEXTDOOR, who I’ve never really liked and “Fake Love” which debuted last year when More Life was given a December release date. “Ice Melts” is a beacon of light in the darkness thanks in part to Young Thug’s chorus (An open letter to Young Thug: the world needs HiTunes or Hy!£UN35 or whatever insane name you’re calling it. Your debut album is just what we need in these dark times. I’ve seen the picture of you and Elton John, and I know y’all are cooking up something crazy).

More Life is the music equivalent of a transformers movie. If you’re going in expecting a work of art, I suggest you look elsewhere. But if you’re looking for a fun, corny pop album (or playlist) and an overall good time, the consistency of More Life certainly beats out that of Views.
6.5/10

About the Contributor
Grant Baker
Grant Baker, The Rider Editor-in-Chief
I'm Grant Baker and I write for this website. I love serving God, watching football and listening to 2000s southern hip hop. Maybe not all of those at the same time. I don't know. Okay you know how hard it is to write one of these things? Pretty hard.
Leave a Comment
Donate to The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media
$0
$5000
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Mansfield Legacy High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs and travel to media workshops.

More to Discover
Donate to The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media
$0
$5000
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *