Two years after his last album “Take Care,” Drake’s newest album “Nothing Was The Same” hit stores on Sept. 24 and not a moment too soon.
While “Nothing” was one of the most anticipated albums of the year, the sound is far from what one might expect from the king of catchy choruses and chart topping radio anthems.
Drake is known for being the rapper with a sensitive side than others in his circle. “Nothing” truly demonstrates this characteristic with its overtly confessional lyrics and minimal back beats that allow his words to take the spotlight.
This album, more than any of his others, gives the impression that we’re gaining a brief glimpse into his personal journal. Drake covers deeply intimate issues, such as the struggles that come as a result of fame, broken familial relationships, ended friendships and past romantic relationships.
Opening the album is the track, “Tuscan Leather,” a song lacking the characteristic pop chorus Drake is known for. Drake even comments on this fact in the lyrics of the song saying, “this is nothin’ for the radio/ but they’ll still play it though/ cause it’s that new Drizzy Drake/ that’s just the way it go.”
This sets the tone for the rest of the album and lets us know that this is more about burning bridges and clearing the air than it is about providing songs to listen to on a Friday night out on the town.
Other songs on the album, such as “Started from the Bottom” and “Hold on We’re Going Home” prove Drake was right in predicting his songs would still be top plays on the radio. Long before the album’s release, these two songs were climbing the charts.
Unlike the other more emotionally heavy songs on the album, these two songs provide a bit of a breather and balance to the track list that might otherwise leave the listener feeling drained.
Though Drake has taken a different route on this album by steering away from the fun, pop feel typical of past albums, “Nothing Was The Same” relates to fans on a deeper level by providing real, raw and honest content about issues everyone faces. The melancholy tone and revelatory lyrics allow a great deal of insight into Drake’s life as a person and an artist and serves as a reminder that despite his fame and fortune, at the end of the day, he goes through the same struggles as anyone else.
Despite this album’s beauty and depth, it is definitely not one I would recommend listening to if you’re looking for upbeat tunes for a party playlist. The overwhelming amount of emotion and intensity this album contains does not qualify it as an easy listen.
As a whole, however, I personally consider this Drake’s best album yet, because he truly shines as an artist and a lyricist.
Because power, money, sex and fame are predominant themes in the hip-hop genre, “Nothing” is a genuine breath of fresh air; the focal point is taken off of such superficial ideas and focuses on the music and the art.