So Drake decides to call his album Nothing Was the Same….. in order to make sure nothing will ever be the same.
Funny – some of this record is similar. But is that a bad thing? Only if you abhor Drake’s mostly-autotuned singing, which dominates the record, unfortunately, despite Drake’s strong rapping.
The LP starts off heavy with Drizzy rapping to a beat that samples Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing” from the film and soundtrack The Bodyguard, backwards and forward. This is Lil Wayne’s protege flowing to an uber-long intro called “Tuscan Leather.”
What follows is Drizzy singing on “Furthest Thing,” which is to signify through the lyrics that he is the furthest thing from perfect. The song is the furthest thing from a rap song, at least in the beginning, but the furthest thing from ear-grindingly annoying.
“Started From the Bottom,” the first single, is an ode to the rise of Drake’s entire team. There is only a small sprinkle of autotune in the second verse. But the song is overall descent.
Next, the supposed tribute to the Wu-Tang Clan, “Wu-Tang Forever,” is a slow, sing-rapping (for the most part) track which uses part of Raekwon verse and mentions the Wu-Tang in the hook. The second verse is a rapid-fire rap, which Drake should have been doing in the entire song if he truly wanted to give a true ode to Staten Island’s favorite sons.
After this, “Worst Behavior” is almost the worst track on the LP, with Drake yelling throughout the song telling us how naughty he is, however nice the slow-paced beat is. At least, the third verse is a nod to Mase, using the first verse from “Feel So Good.” Throw away the rest of the song and replace it with verses like that, and the song might be a little more tolerable.
Jhene Aiko guests on the grand piano-laced “From Time”, but while you’re waiting for him to rhyme, she spends about a minute singing. But as soon as she is done, the Toronto native finally gets around to ripping the track, like, prior to this point, the album was all but starving for. With Ms. Aiko on the hook and Drake smashing the song with some strong lyrics, this is a shining moment on the record.
“Hold On, We’re Going Home” features Majid Jordan and starts off sounding like something from the 80’s that Toto forgot to add to an album. But then it turns out to be an R&B track on a RAP ALBUM?! Although it is a nice track, it is quite out of place for a love song on a album littered with braggadocio as is appropo for an artist on a label called Cash Money. Nonetheless, it gets a pass here.
What follows is “Connect,” which starts off with a clip from some baseball game; then that f**king autotune comes in. NEXT?!
“The Language” is pretty much the same. NEXT?!
“305 To My City”, with Detail, is yet another autotune song but with a tiny bit of rhyming. Yawn.
Sampha puts his voice on “Too Much” in the hook, and then Drake starts doing what was missing in the last four tracks – RAPPING! Thank God for that.
“Pound Cake” features Jay-Z and is another shining moment on this LP. with Drake and Hov each doing a RAP verse. On the same track there is “Paris Morton Music 2,” a new beat with one long Drizzy verse. Nice.
After that, “Come Thru” includes an autotuned first verse and a rap following it, but has a great beat.
The final song, “All Me”, has Drake, 2 Chains and Big Sean giving some nice verses, the kind you would expect from them, but Drake is SINGING AGAIN… but only on the hook.
What’s weird is no one notable from the YMCMB camp – not Weezy, not Nicki Minaj, not Tyga, not even Curren$y – made an appearance on this album.
Overall, the record has far too much crooning and not enough rapping, but we cannot call it total ear rape, because what little rapping there is is strong, as is the overall lyrical content, regardless of the subject matter.
Only Young Money and Drake fans need apply.
Columbia, SC, how Drake fans live there? Holla back.
Nothing Was The Same, huh? Wanna bet?