ALBUM REVIEW: Drake “Take Care”

 

Drake has released his third album (I am including his first mixtape) “Take Care” finally after much anticipation and album push backs. It was already topping the ITunes charts after only a day release. The album leaked a week out from it’s official release but Drake himself wasn’t too phased by it, I assume he knew his content was going to kill it in sales anyhow and it looks like his cockiness is warranted. We already know that Canada will be repping for their Toronto-native man in the sales.

What are other sources saying about “Take Care?”

 

Montreal Gazette says Initially, it seems as if he is simply up to old tricks, as he spends the first few songs dropping introspective rhymes about how hard it is to be successful, over spare instrumentation and barely-there beats… But a funny thing happens as the album unfolds: it opens up. Soon our man is trying on all kinds of sounds, and they all sound good. When you go back to the start to give it a second listen, it sounds better.”

 

Rolling Stone says It’s what Drake does best, collapsing many moods – arrogance, sadness, tenderness and self-pity – into one vast, squish-souled emotion.”

 

 “Take Care” Track-By-Track Review

 

  1. “Over My Dead Body”  Great album starter, chill track over piano and synth a bit of a woe is me track (what’s new) how hard life is wealth and fame. Couple of clever lines, “Shout out to Asian girls / let the lights dim sum,” and  “don’t Mike Jordan have his hoop earring in?”
  1. “Shot For Me “– A track lamenting a past love and taking responsibility for how he has treated women in the past. Nothing particularly stand out about this track.
  1. “Headlines” – A single from the album and one of my favourites, this is a showy track filled with bravado and apologies for his new found fame and the challenges that come with it. The beat is sick and a definite head nodder. Reminds me a bit of  “Best I Ever Had.”
  1. “Crew Love” feat. The Weekend – “Crew Love” sounds like a rave track in the beginning with snare seconds before Drake’s crooning voice interrup. This song is about bromance, love for the crew. Probably my least favourite track on the album the cameo of fellow Canadian singer The Weekend didn’t really do much for me.
  1. “Take Care” feat. Rihanna – From the first time I heard this track I loved it.   These two produce beautiful music together (and were rumoured to share a little more than that in the past) and it is chart topping emo/dance perfection.“Take Care” features a sample of deceased R&B radical Gil Scott-Heron. Rihanna assures Drake that despite his past hurt in relationships, she is worth trusting. I love the deepness in  Rihanna’s voice on this track, a register I rarely hear her sing in. I cannot wait to see the music video for this track. “Take Care” is another album stand out.
  1. “Marvin’s Room/Buried Alive” – Every man and his dog remixed “Marvin’s Room” when it was released earlier this year, and understandably so. The track is universal in it’s appeal, it’s an outpouring of heartbreak, regret and jealousy towards an ex. Drake drunk dials his ex and expresses his grief detailing his empty sex with other women and his belief that ‘she could do better’ than that guy she’s with. Do you feel sorry for him? Would you go over there to see him?
  1. “Underground Kings” – This seems like the kind of track Drake would play driving around his home city in a flashy vehicle, he sings about coming up from underground mixtape days to his current fame and dedicates it to the city.
  1. “We’ll Be Fine” feat. Birdman – When you have Weezy owning the label you’re on you’re going to get some Cash Money connect, in comes Birdman *brrrrr! birdcallllll!* Drake’s trying to sound thugged out in this track and talks about being ‘uptown.’
  1. “Make Me Proud” feat. Nicki Minaj – Another single from the album, and one of my favourite tracks “Make Me Proud” reminds me a lot of  Thank Me Later’s “Fancy.”  This track expresses Drake’s  admiration for a hot, intelligent college girl and features his label-mate Nicki Minaj, who spits a short but witty verse, one line of which I can’t get out of my head “double d up ho’s! Dolly Parton!” It’s an ego-boosting track for ladies who have got it all together to belt out. Love lines such as “Running on the treadmill, only eating salad,” Drake have you been spying on me?
  1. “Lord Knows” feat. Rick Ross – As soon as I heard “Lord Knows” I knew Mr Fancye would love it, being a Ricky Rozay fan. I love the dramatics of this song, it’s so over the top with the gospel sound and deepness of Ross’s voice and it’s upbeat which is a great break from the earlier emo tracks. I can see this becoming a single.
  1. “Cameras/Good Ones Go” – The story of this song is similar to that of Kanye West’s “Flashing Lights”  getting caught being with another woman exposed through the cameras of the paparazzi. I really like the slower beat and R&B backing vocals of this song. “Good Ones Go” is about all the good women he has had relationships with in the past and regrets letting losing (seems to be Drake’s signature, singing about love lost).
  1. “Doing It Wrong” feat. Stevie Wonder – I was disappointed that Stevie wasn’t singing on this track. I feel I have heard this track before with his  ‘oh, ohh’s’  bringing me de ja vu. Drizzy sings about himself being a heartbreaker. Good song, but not worth the hype that surrounded it (it may have been if Stevie sung on it).
  1. “The Real Her” feat. Lil Wayne and Andre 3000 – Okay Weezy taking shots at Stevie Wonder who was on the preceding track, REALLY? This song is a cool track (besides the dig at Stevie) Andre 3000 brings his lyrical quirkiness and details dating a woman who is in love with Drake’s fame.
  1. “Look What You’ve Done” – This song is a tribute to his mother, aunt, grandma and father (who he is a strained relationship with). I get a shout out in this track if you listen carefully, he professes his love to me. Aww! This song is great and probably would have been better placed earlier in the tracklist to break up the emo and ego.  Everyone loves a family tribute track. I really love “Look What You’ve Done.” 
  1. “HYFR” (Hell Ya F**kin’ Right) feat. Lil Wayne –This track is supposed to be a response to excessive questioning, ‘hell yeah f**kin right.’ Nothing too special about this song.
  1. “Practice” – Not only do you get Cash Money artists when you belong to Weezy you also get recycled New Orleans rap hits in this case “Back That Azz Up.” At first I was a little pissed to hear Drake sampling such a classic, but it has grown on me. I still remember the first time I heard “Back That Azz Up” in college days, in the dorm room of a New Orleans native, my boy Phil.  Ahh many a booty pop and shake in that room!
  1. “The Ride”  feat. The Weekend – A track about the hardship of fame.
  1. “The Motto” feat. Lil Wayne (BONUS TRACK) – The backbeat reminds me of a sick Southern rap back beat, very Cash Money-esque. This song is very catchy and should have been moved up the tracklist. Love the Weezy “skeet, skeet” and oh my God Becky, look at her butt! (Sir-Mix-A-Lot)” lines.
  1. “Hate Sleeping Alone” (BONUS TRACK) – Another track for airing his dirty laundry, he sings about how he’s going to call another girl because he can’t sleep alone. Oh Drizzy, you are such a sensitive soul…

 

 The Verdict

 

“Take Care” gives us the Drake formulated sound we expect and love from him. One thing I have realised upon listening to this album is that if Drake ever holds a girlfriend long enoough to marry her and have a family, he will most probably fall off the singer/rapper music scene. Drake’s signature formula is sadness, loss in love and relationships, being in touch with his feelings, the downfalls of fame and bravado. Blissful love will undoubtedly change his content. So Mr Graham, please don’t settle down and be happy anytime soon, because we want you around for a while longer.

I have never heard an artist who’s mastered the hybrid of singing and rapping quite so eloquently as Drake, which is what makes him so audibly unique. Artists normally sit in one camp or the other. The appeal with Drake is that he sings to us ladies and gives the brash bravado to his male fans, who secretly use his music to woo the ladies (oh don’t think I don’t know!)

“Take Care” is a well balanced and diverse enough sounding album to stay on rotate for another year till his next release. Drake proves to us again why his album releases are worth the wait, with “Take Care.” 

 

 Fancye scale:  4.5 /5 

 

What do you think of Drake’s “Take Care?” What are your favourite tracks?

You can purchase “Take Care” HERE on ITunes.

 

Miss Fancye

xo 

 

 

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