The hip hop scene has recently gone through heavy changes. With artists such as Kanye West, Death Grips and Lil Ugly Mane pushing the sound to new levels with progressive production, abstract lyricism, and darker imagery, the genre as a whole is moving away from its current era, sometimes referred to as the “Dark Age” of hip hop.
Toronto rapper, singer and songwriter Drake is often heavily criticized for his lack of originality. However, his recent full-length commercial album “Nothing Was The Same” will not disappoint fans who are looking for a hard-hitting hip hop album that is both entertaining and progressive for the genre.
When it comes to production, this album is nearly flawless. Every track’s instrumentals correspond with its lyrical content perfectly.
“Started From The Bottom”, one of the album’s singles, has a hard-driving trap influenced beat to match its egotistic subject matter, while “305 To My City”, a track about the darker side of city life, has a quiet, atmospheric and bass-filled beat.
It goes without saying that Drake is not stuck in the past regarding the beats he chooses to use for each track, and the mood of each instrumental flows very well with the story the album tells.
Unfortunately, Drake does not seem to be pushing himself any further lyrically. This is the biggest flaw in the entire album.
While there are some tracks that feature new subject matter, such as “From Time”, a beautifully presented conversation between Drake and an old flame, most of the lyrics on the album are bland, unoriginal and redundant.
The majority of the tracks are about either failed relationships, girls or how much more successful and tough he is than the average person. Sadly, Drake does not show his full potential with these lyrics, and this causes a huge drop in quality.
The album is certainly surrounded by mixed opinions from various students.
“Drake can sometimes be very emotional, which isn’t always a good thing,” senior Solomon Johnson said, “But the album is definitely pushing hip hop’s sound further, with slower and more jazzy beats.”
Some students disagree with Johnson however.
“Drake sounds just as hilarious as usual,” senior Logan Healy said, ““Started From The Bottom” is a good song, but for the most part, the album is nothing different from his other overly-emotional songs.”
Many students agree that Drake’s subject matter is often slightly too emotional for them.
“Nothing Was The Same” is an album that shows Drake is perfectly capable of producing fantastic work, but for some reason only when he chooses to.
The album is certainly different from his past work, so do not expect a rehashed copy of one of his previous albums.
However, for those who were not previously fans of Drake, and want to hear something more original and progressive from him, give the album a try. It does not disappoint