Drake was walking into immense pressure when this project dropped. He was viewed as trailing behind Pusha T and his barrage of disses that had to be ended by J Prince. He was also accused of being a deadbeat to his publicly discovered son. Not to mention many people did not receive his last album “More Life” in a well manner. To be frank, he was gambling with Scorpion. And the album delivered its venom.
One thing that got me in a good space is that this project is the first time I felt that aura of his classic mixtape, Comeback Season, before his So Far Gone debut. Then it’s the fact that he turned it to a double disc, with Side A as the Rap side and Side B, delivering on his promise of an R&B album. As I started playing Side A , dropping my fiance off to work, the production caught my attention. Actually 40 did an AMAZING job with Each Track with the melodies, the Louisiana bounce on Side B, the correct use of samples and mostly the track order. 40 showed out in grand fashion. Nonstop is more likely to hit the clubs and airwaves on speed, but its the track, Emotionless that really stood out as he flat out answered the reason for the absence of acknowledgement of his seed as well as the state of society in a downward sprial:
“I know a girl whose one goal was to visit Rome
Then she finally got to Rome
And all she did was post pictures for people at home
‘Cause all that mattered was impressin’ everybody she’s known
I know another girl that’s cryin’ out for help
But her latest caption is “Leave me alone”
I know a girl happily married ’til she puts down her phone
I know a girl that saves pictures from places she’s flown
To post later and make it look like she still on the go
Look at the way we live
I wasn’t hidin’ my kid from the world
I was hidin’ the world from my kid
From empty souls who just wake up and look to debate
Until you starin’ at your seed, you can never relate”
Couple standout tracks to rock out to. Sandra’s Rose can be a classic while Drake summarizes his greatness in the game “I’m a chosen one, flowers never pick themselves” Drake also shocks the world on a feature from Jay-Z , basically squashing the beef between the two. Jay-Z line that transcend the environment and lackluster the street life when he said “You took X but let Zimmerman live, Streets is Done”
As Side B approaches, Drake shows his R&B style in full. Nothing really to be surprised of considering his basic level tone in 40 beats. Don’t expect him to sing Soprano. You won’t find it. Drake really showed ode to the Louisiana Bounce on Nice For What, and In My Feelings. As I was sitting outside the courthouse (don’t ask), That’s How You Feel was on repeat as the 808s matched the mood I was in. Cue the Drakeness. Ratchet Happy Birthday to me was a disappointment. Don’t use this as your official Birthday song or you will get laughed at. I warrant this as a viable skip. As far as the posthumous Michael Jackson feature, Don’t Matter to Me, it didn’t really strike deep to my chords because I have to question if it really sounded like MJ in the first place. After wrestling with the fact that it was him, his voice barely matched the rhythm but passed as a relatable listen. It confirmed to me that even though this was thankful, MJ would sound a whole lot better and acceptable using today’s sounds if he were alive today. Final Fantasy sounded like if Dreamcast was used in 2018 and your youngest daughter accidentally broke it while playing Final Fantasy.
March 14th was the last song and an ode to his son, Adonis, as he acknowledges him throughout the album. In this track he throughly explained his situation and silenced any questions
“I don’t want you worry about whose house you live at / Or who loves you more, or who’s not there / Who did what to who ‘fore you got here / Now, look, I’m too proud to let that come between me and you now / Realise I got to think for two now, I gotta make it, I better make it / I promise if I’m not dead then I’m dedicated.”
To sum this up, Drake has a star-studded career. What adds on to the prestige of the brand is how you respond to adversity. Compare this album to LeBron scoring 45 pts and 15 rebounds facing elimination. He went more personal than he ever did, which was a valiant effort. He definitely has some records that are classic worthy in a few years time. Not to mention he answered back to Pusha T and more importantly his son. Pusha has definitely won battles. But Drake may have won the war. This album proves he’s in the topic of discussion now.
Not a bad ode to the Scorpio. At All ?