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Album Review: More Life (2017) by Drake

“And More Chune for your headtop so watch how you speak on my name you know?”

After the numerous delays and teases over the last few months, we were starting to lose hope that this album would ever be released, but the wait just might have been worth it. Drake continues the strong Jamaican influence seen on VIEWS, with songs such as Blem and Madiba Riddim. Additionally, he seems to have adopted the British grime style on More Life, including features from Giggs and Skepta. He began to pursue this genre with his remix of Dave’s “Wanna Know” last September, and we are glad that he continued with it. Drizzy has been called a “culture vulture” by many for his use of others’ styles, but in our opinion, as long as he’s making good music, it doesn’t matter. In fact, we believe it’s simply good business. The bigger the fan base, the more money he makes.

Generally, we prefer songs where Drake raps over hard-hitting beats as opposed to his vulnerable, emotional songs on which he only sings. While the latter are certainly his forte, for us they can be a toss-up; some are great, chill vibes while others are not. On More Life, Drake does a great job managing both. Our favorites of the first category are “Free Smoke,” “No Long Talk,” “Can’t Have Everything,” and “KMT” (even though he definitely bit XXXTENTACION’s flow for this). As for the second category, we still particularly enjoyed “Passionfruit,” “Blem,” and “Teenage Fever,” while the rest were decent, but not necessarily standouts.

His lineup of features is also quite remarkable. In addition to the aforementioned British rappers – Sampha, Giggs, and Skepta – More Life includes the likes of Kanye West, Travis Scott, Quavo, Young Thug, 2 Chainz, PARTYNEXTDOOR, Jorja Smith, and Black Coffee. One of the best collaborations on the album, “Glow,” featuring Kanye West, brings together two of our generation’s best rappers. However, the best features were actually Young Thug and Travis Scott. Thug’s verse on “Sacrifices” easily outshined Drake and 2 Chainz, and he delivered a warm, light, buoyant chorus on “Ice Melts.” We’re pretty biased towards Travis, but he undeniably murdered his verse on “Portland.” We get chills from the line: “No, I did not sign with Jay, but I still send a Tidal wave. Yeah, I might just go get the fade buy the du-rag and just tie the waves.”

Ultimately, the best song the entire album might the final one, “Do not Disturb,” in which Drake gives listeners an inside look at his life since his last album, VIEWS, and discusses a variety of topics that include his rap feuds and his romantic relationships. Listeners can truly hear the “tension and the urgency” in his voice, perhaps due to the fact that it’s his last chance to get rid of any last thoughts and burdens. In all honesty, More Life did not sport a single bad song. The biggest complaint with the album would have to be Drake’s unbalanced ratio of singing to rapping, but at this point it’s hard for Drake to reconcile his two contrasting fanbases as he continues to cater towards both.

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