Drake's new album reveals may be having a hard time finding himself…
Is Drizzy Having (Another) Mid-Life Crisis?
Toronto’s very own hit machine might be going through it right now. Last week, when Drake released a surprise album, Honestly, Nevermind, to the masses on no more than a few hours notice, fans' minds were spinning with possibilities. Were we getting “rap Drake?” What about “R&B Drake?” Is it going to be loaded with features? What’s on the man’s psyche now? Then it dropped, and listeners around the world skipped through a tracklist that sounded like the cool kid’s bar mitzvah dance playlist.
I’m sure you’ve seen a review or two on the album (they’re literally everywhere), and if so, you’d be correct to assume that his newest project is highly divisive. On one hand, the slight majority thinks it’s hot, steaming garbage. On the other, folks are pleading with critics to understand his approach: “it’s not a rap album,” they say, “it’s a house record! You just don’t get it yet.” While we see both sides, the latter has missed the mark. “House music” and “dance music” have quickly become defense mechanism buzz words amongst the Drake fan community… but is it house music? I guess so, but it’s half-assed and lazy, yet still dominating the dance charts. It’s the bare minimum — like calling Coors Light “beer,” or a g-string “clothing.”
Most importantly, however, Honestly, Nevermind reveals something about the artist behind the microphone. This is Drake’s latest (and biggest) mid-life crisis.
“Biggest… what about when he hid from the world that he had a fucking child?” Before you make Adonis jokes, realize that: (1) that’s family business (2) you’re not Pusha T. In all reality, this album is the latest in a string of mildly odd, mildly funny adult decisions. Remember when he decided it was totally not corny to dress up in full warmup garb and take shootaround with Kentucky men’s basketball team? Did Coach Callipari owe Drake money? Or how about when he engraved a cute little heart into his fade (a decision no reasonable man makes in his late thirties), and did a comfy photoshoot within the confines of his ginormous house (the same house he did a video tour of… in a ski mask… performing a Tik Tok Dance… for a music video). Are these a far cry from a musical release? Yes, but the common denominator remains true: his fans justifying it.
Kanye fans did the same thing when he released that mickey mouse Christian album, Jesus Is King. What makes this particular choice more significant than the others is the simple fact that it’s his craft in question. Drake mastered the crossover between rap and r&b in the modern age, so why is he singing “your pussy is calling my name” in pitched up autotune for two straight minutes on “Calling My Name?” Why’d he think this was a good idea? Throwing together some Dance Dance Revolution bullshit on what must’ve been three days notice, and thinking it’s “hot for the summer vibes” is an act only committed by a man who thinks he’s thirty-five going on twenty-two. We’re praying for you, 6 God.