Drake’s More Life is finally here. While it was billed as a playlist, the Canadian superstar’s latest project has all the makings of a major studio album.
The 22-track set, which is available in wide release, has plenty of buzz and a star-studded guest list to match. It features an array of talent, including Kanye West, 2 Chainz, Young Thug, PARTYNEXTDOOR, Quavo, Travis Scott, Giggs, and Sampha. Even its interludes bring some familiar faces, with the likes of Lil Wayne, Skepta, and Aubrey’s mother, Sandi Graham.
Jennifer Lopez, who was thought to appear on the Black Coffee and Jorja Smith-assisted “Get It Together,” doesn’t actually lend vocals, but she is referenced in more than one way. “Free Smoke,” for instance, lets on about their rumored relationship. “I drunk text J.Lo,” says Drake. “Old number, so it bounce back.” Later, on “Teenage Fever,” he samples “If You Had My Love” off Lopez’s 1999 debut, On the 6.
More Life also contains more subliminal disses. Following talks of a Jay Z feud, the 6 God directly references Hov. “I wanna move to Dubai,” he raps. “So I don’t never have to kick it with none of you guys / I didn’t listen to Hov on that old song / When he told me pay it no mind / I get more satisfaction outta going at your head and seeing all of you die / And I seen a lot of you die.”
The lyric calls back to Shawn Carter’s Blueprint classic “Heart of the City (Ain’t No Love).” “Young’ns ice-grilling me,” he raps on the track. “Oh, you not feeling me? Fine / It costs you nothing, pay me no mind.”
Drake could also be referencing “Light Up,” their Thank Me Later collaboration, on which Jay Z raps: “Drake, here’s how they gon’ come at you / With silly rap feuds, trying to distract you / In disguise, in the form of a favor.”
Meek Mill also appears to be the target of Drake’s jabs once again. “All you did was write the book on garbage ass Rollies / Ego strokin’, picture postin’ / Claiming that you do it for motivational purposes only.”
Mill spoke about his love for Rolexes during his appearance on the “Tax Season” podcast. “This shit is the trophy right here,” he said of his constant references to the luxury brand. “The way I use Instagram, [it’s] my tool to show young ni**as, ‘This is the clear port. This is a jet. This ain’t no Glock 40 with an extendo.’ … The material shit is enough to catch these young boys’ eyes and make them focus on something else instead of killing and going to jail.”
While Drake’s fiery side was on display, so was his love for music. More Life blends R&B, pop, and rap with inspiration from the U.K. to the Caribbean. The musical influences are as varied as the sample choices. Aside from the J.Lo track, Earth, Wind & Fire’s “Devotion” is sampled on “Glow” and Lionel Richie’s “All Night Long (All Night)” inspired “Blem.” Even “Sonic the Hedgehog” was sampled on “KMT.”
Drake’s More Life, which follows last year’s Views, has the buzz of an official album and might be the closest his fans get to it this year. In fact, this may very well be his final project of 2017, at least judging by the playlist’s final song, “Do Not Disturb.”
“My life is set around competition and currency,” he raps. “Take the summer off because they tell me I need recovery / Maybe gettin’ back to my regular life will humble me / I’ll be back in 2018 to give you the summary.”