Drake - "More Life" Mar 26, 2017 23:01:23 GMT -5
Post by StevePulaski on Mar 26, 2017 23:01:23 GMT -5
More Life (2017)
Before we can really talk about More Life, we need to talk about its classification as a "playlist," which I believe really does matter.
More Life is an interesting assembly of every sound and style Drake is known for, and the playlist is therefore made special because there is something for everyone who is fond of Drake. I'd go as far to say that if you're even a casual fan of the singer, there's at least one song on this twenty-five track project that you thoroughly enjoy.
If you're a fan of his trap-side that has him sloganeering otherwise conventional details of wealth like "Hermes link, ice blue mink," try "Gyalchester" and "Can't Have Everything," especially the latter if you want to hear Drake on one of his smoothest flows yet. If you're craving more of his dancehall influence, "Madiba Riddim" and "Blem" set the stage for a crooning twofer. Or maybe you want some lush, tropical vibes with "Passionfruit," if you can look past that needless DJ intro.
Drake's mainstream side rears its head with "Portland" and "Sacrifices," the former boasting fun and ambient sounds from Quavo and Travi$ Scott, while the latter has 2 Chainz and Young Thug featured for a great balance. Young Thug even works with a more natural sound that doesn't favor bubbly, sometimes cloying vocal enhancement that makes some of his early songs a tough listen.
The playlist's opener, "Free Smoke," channels the kind of softer but apparent rage he let loose on "Nothing Was the Same," while "Lose You" takes us back to the "Take Care" days where Drake impressed us with his smooth R&B side. If you prefer Drake putting on performers you probably never heard of before, try "4422," which is an excellent showcase of the UK-based Sampha and his ethereal singing capabilities.
And if you detest Giggs' verses on "No Long Talk or "KMT," just imagine "Hell's Kitchen"'s Gordon Ramsay rapping and give yourself a much-needed laugh.
Finally, all of this madness - which is about as long as a feature-length film - is capped off by a phenomenal closer, "Do Not Disturb," which suggests this is the last we'll hear from Drake in a complete sense for the remainder of the year. Perhaps we'll get a reflective album like Take Care in 2018, or another triumphant and expressive mixtape like If You're Reading This It's Too Late.
Drake's classifying More Life as a playlist makes a lot of sense when calling it an album feels incorrect and calling it a mixtape feels too general. Pay attention to the way songs transition and bleed into one another. I could've sworn "Free Smoke" and "No Long Talk" were connected, or the conclusion of "4422" makes way for the doomy opening of "Gyalchester."
Drake wanted to create a release that felt like the playlists we make of his music, or our favorite music in general, that houses all of our favorite songs in one place and gives us something that may define ourselves. Maybe just a little.
These subtle but present attributes turn More Life into a stylistically conscious work, cognizant of its existence and form, and, in turn, makes for a delightful treat to all Drake fans. Even the most important element of a Drake release - the mood and the vibes it gives off - isn't neglected despite a release that can admittedly be a bit ponderous and overlong.
More Life succeeds in giving us a lot more of Drake and a lot more of what Drake does well than the underwhelming Views did. While it doesn't offer the kind of insights to the 6 and the community in which Drake grew up (I still say that's where IYRTITL shines), it shows the singer as a man of many hats and a man of great ambition at least when it comes to creating a project chock full of variety.
This is a diverse, multi-course meal I'm happy to indulge in and let digest and stew while I wait for whatever unorthodox, ambitious record-breaking, imminent streaming success, meme-inspiring project Drake has in store for the future.
More life to you.
Favorite songs: "Gyalchester," "Can't Have Everything," "Free Smoke," "Do Not Disturb," "Passionfruit," "4422," and "Sacrifices"