Drake follows in the footsteps of some of the greatest names in hip hop — namely, the keenest rapper, Eminem, and the most celebrated artist, Kanye West. But Drake is not very good in making music. He doesn’t have a terribly good technique, and his production borrows from the work of real producers (while his lyrics are often straightforwardly stollen from a team of ghostwriters: contrast with Kendrick Lamar, who Eminem tested to see if his lyrics were ghostwritten, because they were so good — Drake couldn’t be more different, whose ghostwritten lyrics are straightforwardly terrible).
Drake’s latest album is almost unbearable. Honestly, Nevermind opens with a forgettable Intro (honestly, nevermind) and the almost depressingly empty ‘Falling Back’.
There aren’t many reasons I can think of why people like Drake. He doesn’t have anything to say. He has no original ideas; his entire career is a mere footnote to Kanye West’s album 808s and Heartbreak. Drake himself sampled the album frequently earlier in his career. Recently he joined Kanye for the best concert of Drake’s career, and perhaps the worst of Kanye’s. This is the difference between the two artists. If Drake is the fallen ‘Hamlet’ of hip hop, then Kanye is Shakespeare.
But Hamlet as a character is complex. Drake is simple to the point of banal. And … Honestly, nevermind.
Afternote: After reading some mildly positive reviews of the album, it occurred to me: surely there’s some redeeming feature of this album? The production on Currents, track 4, is OK. And there is one lyric on track 5 that rings true: ‘I found a new muse. / That’s bad news for you.’ Sure it is, Drake. It’s bad news for us all. Don’t say Kanye didn’t predict it.
Disclaimer: Any similarity between names mentioned and actual individuals is purely accidental and largely theoretical. These are fun ideas to entertain but, as always, I may be mistaken. After all, what do I know?