What a Time To Confess I Love This Album
I just realized I love What a Time To Be Alive. Remember Drake and Future’s collaborative record that came out last year? You probably don’t, and that’s fine because even Future says #ItNeverHappened — it dropped on iTunes out of the blue after a couple days of Internet promotion, and it had a cover with a stock photo of diamonds, and a 10 dollar price tag.
You may not remember it, but I do— in fact, I remember putting that thing on my phone and listening to it while I was going to Uni. My conclusion after the first listen was the same as many other people: this wasn’t a Drake tape at all — as I’d have liked, I must admit — , it was another Future mixtape with the Toronto rapper all over it. Metro Boomin’s glimmering trap production didn’t complement Drake’s rapping very well, and although their chemistry was decent, they didn’t trade bars in any song of the whole project — which, for a collaborative album, seems unusual and disappointing.
However, I kept returning to it. Its tight run-out time and cohesive production (outside of Drake’s solo track “30 for 30 Freestyle” produced by Noah “40”) kept me hooked. It featured pretty diverse flows and some of the catchiest hooks I heard last year (one thing both rappers know to execute extremely well): “Me and my friends we got money to spend”, “Get a plastic bag. Go ahead and pick up all the cash. You danced all night, girl, you deserve it”, “Diamond, diamond, diamond, diamonds on me dancing”, “Cause I got a really big team. And they need some really big rings. They need some really nice things. Better be comin’ with no strings” and, of course, “Jumpman, Jumpman, Jumpman”.
I’m aware that What a Time To Be Alive was received with mixed opinions. Many will say it’s not even a good Future tape, much less a decent Drake album, and I’ll disagree. For starters, I don’t think it’s supposed to be judged alongside Take Care or DS2 — it was recorded in a week, and its more complex hook is four lines repeated multiple times changing the order. I also think it’s time to stop saying this was just a joke album or whatever Drake and Future stans say to justify why their faves dropped a “mediocre” and “underwhelming” record. What a Time might be rushed, unpolished, even too commercial (although it ended up selling way less than Drake’s solo mixtape If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late), but it’s the hungriest and catchiest these two rappers have sounded.