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The Milton Measure

Drake Releases Another Hit Playlist: More Life

by on Friday, April 14th, 2017

After the long-awaited release of Drake’s newest project More Life, audiences around the world responded with praise, as well as criticism. Drake prefaced More Life late last year with his single “Fake Love,” which instantly sparked excitement for the album’s release. In an interview with the magazine Complex, Drake shared his hope to provide the listener with “a playlist to give you a collection of songs that become the soundtrack to your life.” Was he successful? After its March 18th release date, More Life broke many records on music streaming services, one such service being Spotify. Additionally, it shot to the top of the Billboard 200 as the number one album. Such striking success calls for an exploration of More Life, a comparison with Drake’s body of work, and a closer look into its reception.

More Life contains twenty-two tracks that provide extensive variety and multiple collaborations. Many praise the project for its cohesive composition, a commendable feat for such an album with over an hour and twenty minutes of content. Drake aimed to delve into the music of other cultures, particularly from the Caribbean. Influences of Caribbean music are prominent throughout the album and show Drake’s hope to utilize music as an instrument for crossing cultural barriers.

The album also delves into a deeply personal part of Drake’s life. For example, “Can’t Have Everything” features the voice of his mother as she provides advice about the struggles he faces. A few tracks stand out as highlights of the album. “Passionfruit” has already hit the radio with undeniable potential to become a hit this summer. Along with multiple other tracks on the Billboard 100, “Fake Love” remains a favorite for many. More Life’s multi-layered playlist blends many aspects of Drake’s identity as a musician and an individual to produce an album full of complexity.

Drake, like many other artists, has evolved over the course of his musical career. Those who have followed Drake for a while remember Thank Me Later and Take Care. Many people began following Drake because of their love for these albums. After Views, Drake’s album released almost a year ago, many felt disappointed that the Drake they once knew had begun to fade. For many listeners, More Life echoes Drake’s older but well-loved work that once captured their attention. Drake said he created More Life to serve as “a body of work…to bridge the gap between [any] major releases.” He achieved this goal through an admirable balance between his past and present musical styles.

While many received More Life with praise and applause, some criticized the project. Magazines such as Rolling Stone gave More Life four out of five stars, an impressive rating. However, the album received criticism for its length, which eventually caused listeners to lose interest. Others took issue with the album’s Caribbean elements and saw them as cultural appropriation. Despite this controversy, More Life captured a vast audience that is reflected in Drake’s single-day artist stream record. Milton students had positive reviews of More Life, calling it “admirably original,” “downright catchy,” and “a reminder of the old Drake.” In his New York Times article, Jon Caramanica concluded, “Drake is a teacher to many, but he’s still a hungry student, too.”

Drake undoubtedly has a hit in More Life, from its instantaneous popularity to its sustained success. He embraced his ever-transitioning artistic identity and simultaneously maintained a connection with his past self. Though he received slightly mixed reviews, the majority of listeners applauded his project. At the end of “Do Not Disturb,” the album’s last song, Drake says, “Maybe gettin’ back to my regular life will humble me / I’ll be back in 2018 to give you the summary.” After his break, I look forward to seeing what his artistic future holds…I’m sure he has a lot more up his sleeve.


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Posted by on Apr 14 2017. Filed under Arts & Entertainment. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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