Album Review : More Life
Album Title: More Life
Genre: Hip Hop
Year of Release: 2017
Track Length: 23
Over the decades, opinions have varied as to not only what constitutes true hip hop, but also the artists that serve as the genre’s last flagbearers. There has been so much blending of pop and rap, and with the birth of sub-genres like Trap Music (hi, Fetty Wap) and Mumble Rap (have at you, Migos), there has been much for hip hop purists to mull over and equally cringe about.
For Aubrey “Drake” Graham, there has been a lot of divided opinion, but no one has the right to call him out for undermining the genre championed by the likes of 2pac, B. I. G, Easy E and Dr. Dre. He since proved his mettle with 2013’s “Nothing Was The Same” and 2015’s “If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late.” All those who questioned his lyrical prowess were silenced with those two records. “Tuscan Leather”, “The Furthest Thing” and “Wu Tang Forever” are tracks that I still played as recent as last week. He owes no one anything, really.
“Views” may have been an experimental album, with “Hotline Bling” stretching things a bit too much, but Drake makes up for that with “More Life”. The album does not promise a return to hard-hitting bars, but it shows that the Canadian rapper has still got it.
The 23-track album sees Drake try to balance pop appeal with basic rap flow. “Teenage Fever” sees him sample Jennifer Lopez’s “If You Had My Love”, while “Madiba Riddim” has him flirt with some tropical sound. “Jorja Interlude”, “Do Not Disturb” and “KMT” come with above average lyrical rhythm, and we see more pop experimentation with “Blem” and “Passionfruit”. There is some depth in “Sacrifices”, aided by 2Chainz and Young Thug. Ghanaian-UK rapper Skepta also lends a hand in “Skepta Interlude”.
The album however shows Drake’s unwillingness to move on to new themes. “Fake Love” lends much weight to this fact. He is still talking about breakups, sleeping with people’s girlfriends, cutting off fake friends and coping with success. Sure enough, these topics are relevant, but when they stretch across four albums, the whining gets tiring.
Standout Tracks: Sacrifices, Gyalchester, Jorja Interlude
Tracks That Should Not Have Made The Cut: Since Way Back, Get It Together