REVIEW: New Drake album good but falls short in some spots
Published: Thursday, September 26, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, October 1, 2013 00:10
One of the most anticipated rap albums of the year dropped this week. Drake's third full-length album “Nothing Was the Same” is now available worldwide.
Drake has proven himself time and time again in the hip-hop world. He has created a sound that is so unique. I think everyone who hears a new track by Drake can identify it as his within the first few seconds. If the signature smooth Noah “40” Shebib beat doesn't give it away, Drake's incomparable voice will give it away in a heartbeat. The music he creates can only be described as being just so “Drake.”
I have always considered myself a big fan of Drake. His first full album, “Thank Me Later,” captivated me just like it did the rest of the world, and it didn't stop there. A few years and another Grammy-winning album later, Drake has affected pop culture in such a way that it will never be the same. Most notably, Drake's hit single “The Motto” left the world screaming “YOLO” at the top of their lungs, and I think it's safe to say the fad isn't going away for a while.
So what did Drake bring to the table with this new album? Well, like I said before, Drake is Drake, and this album is definitely signature Drake. NWTS followed suit with his previous album “Take Care” in that it was a slower, with a more R&B approach. The word that keeps coming to mind when I think of the beats that run throughout the record is “smooth.” The smooth and almost jazzy feel makes NWTS very easy to listen to. I almost want to say it is a perfect album to play in the background of a semi-classy house party.
All and all, this really is a great album, but it still left me a little disappointed in a few aspects.
The first negative is actually due to one of the positives. The “smooth” feeling carrying throughout the album could very easily be perceived as slow and slightly boring, and to be completely honest, I found myself feeling a little bored with some of the tracks. The sound from track to track seems almost repetitive at times as well. In the short time I have spent with this album, I have a really hard time keeping some of the tracks separate from each other in my mind.
One other critique I have for this album is the overall lack of catchy refrain or hook lines throughout. The songs have a catchy beat, but each one seems to really lack the sing-along-while-cruising-down-Main-Street chorus that music fans love.
This is actually part of my biggest issue with this album. During and after listening to this record, I just had an overwhelming feeling that Drake was holding back. It is like he didn't reach his full potential. Drake has proven he is capable of making incredible music and his raps can really be compared with the all-time greats, but I just felt like instead of stepping up to the plate and knocking this album out of the park, Drake decided to play it safe and take a nice infield base hit. He shows sparks of greatness, but they are fleeting, and it really teases me.
If this doesn't make sense, you will see what I am talking about after listening to a few tracks from the album. He opens the album with an upbeat track titled “Tucson Leather” that really got me excited for the rest of the album, but the energy faded a bit, only to resurface itself in spats until tracks “Worst Behavior” and “The Language.” Those three tunes are probably my favorite on the album.