More Life: More than just an album
When rapper ‘Drake’ released his seventh studio project titled ‘More Life’ on 18th March 2017, it signalled a new era for not just rap music, but music in general. Instead of releasing it as an album, the Toronto-born artist released it as a ‘playlist’. In doing this, and with the delayed released of the project, Drake smartly kept hold of his zeitgeist. The playlist, which contains 22 songs and branches out in a plethora of genres, has helped the self-proclaimed ‘6 God’ maintain his influence and relevancy in today’s mainstream media.
The playlist itself is nothing short of a masterpiece. With features from artists such as Kanye West, Skepta and Giggs, it’s clear that Drake is trying to experiment more with his music than he’s ever done before. With him delving into genre’s such as Grime, R’n’B, and even stretching as far as South African House in the song ‘Get it Together’, Drake has taken rap music to a whole new level. Having received rave reviews all round from journalists and publishers alike, ‘More Life’ has been seen a step-up from his last album ‘Views’, which considering ‘Views’’ commercial success, is an accomplishment to say the least.
‘More Life’ has received such rave reviews mainly down to the fact that Drake has managed to include such a wide variety of genres within his songs in order to make the playlist appealable to almost everyone. In the tracks, Drizzy manages to make a Grime song (‘No Long Talk’), a Dance song (‘Passionfruit’) and an R&B song (‘Jorga Interlude’) flow perfectly with one another in a way that has never even been attempted before in rap. His creative use of fillers between songs allows him to link the songs together with ease, as the words of Giggs leads perfectly into the each song from the previous.
The fact that Drake decided to release the project as a playlist instead of the traditional album has led to many pondering on the question as to whether this could be a signal at the death of the album, and the birth of the playlist. With projects such as Kanye West’s ‘The Life of Pablo’ also going with the playlist format instead of an album, it wouldn’t be completely wrong to suggest more and more artists could release playlists in the future, as this would allow artists to edit their music with ease and create music that isn’t confined by any restrictions.
I interviewed former OVO employee and Drake fanatic Daniel Odoom about his thoughts regarding the playlist and how Drake has influenced the music industry of today: https://soundcloud.com/user-807389323/drake-interview
So, ‘More Life’. Undeniably one of Drake’s best pieces of work to date, the project is much more than just the album, both literally and theoretically. It’s an experiment, an expression of how Drake thinks the music industry is changing and his way of trying get to ahead in the game. Revolutionary.