March 22, 2017

Why Drake's 'More Life' works as a 'playlist'

20 March 2017, 08:21 | Max Haynes

Why Drake's 'More Life' works as a 'playlist'

Why Drake's 'More Life' works as a 'playlist'

With 22 tracks making their way onto the playlist, "More Life" is an ambitious project by any standard and features two more tracks than last year's already impressive standard edition of "Views".

Funnily enough, it's the appearances from British artists that do the most for "More Life". And why wouldn't it, if his mixtape is surveying his musical headspace of the moment? After waiting 3 years for "Views", fans were not expecting a new project this soon, but after the single "Fake Love" was released last October and the project was announced, fans have anxiously been waiting after the project was set back multiple times.

As Drake fans revel in this, they still get to know there's more to come from him: "More time with family and friends". And when services pay musicians based on per-song plays, more songs also generally means more money. So the fact that the Canadian rapper who charged up the hip-hop game and now towers over the genre from his CN Tower perch has urged us to refer to this project as a "playlist" just leaves us asking more questions.

The song, titled Free Smoke, includes the lyrics, "I drunk text J. Lo / Old numbers so I bounce back / Boy Wonder gotta bounce back". Jorja Smith's soulful vocals glide across two early tracks, one of which is elevated by the presence of South African house whiz Black Coffee. It's not something that I'm proud of because it took just as much of an emotional toll on me.

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Drizzy's Afro Beat infusion on More Life, specifically on "Blem", was well received by listeners.

You can stream More Life below via Spotify, and help Drake keep breaking records. He hands over the whole woozy track to the singer's extremely capable falsetto, which lends 4422 an emotional heft rarely felt on the rest of More Life.

The album also features English rappers Giggs and Skepta as well as USA hip hop stars 2 Chains, Young Thug, PARTYNEXTDOOR and a briefly, Lil Wayne. Still the best look belongs to south London rapper Giggs, who appears twice and burns through his verse on KMT, where he snarls "Fingers all itching, twitching, looking all jerky / Whipping that white girl, cooking that Cersei".

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