MORE LIFE BY DRAKE - A KITTEN LIFE REVIEW
Let’s start with the scene: The Kittens hosted a global listening party at our Montreal-based Kitten Castle, prepped with booze, babes and bass-heavy speakers.
The rumours suggested there would be 30 songs, with appearances by Kanye, J.Lo, Lionel Ritchie, Young Thug, Travis Scott.
And I sit patiently, trying not to get too excited about the prospects.
Is it possible to get hyped about a Drake drop anymore? (says the girl who get hyped over every Drake drop including this one, but is trying to stay cool)
And therein lies both his lifeline and his demise: The Drake Machine has amassed a fan base so large, so loud, so fiercely eager for his content, that it’s exhausting for either party to engage with the other.
In his own words, “And more chune for your head tops, so watch how you speak on my name, you know?”
Life is one big paradox, isn't it?
"It's a marathon, not a sprint, but I still gotta win the race" – Drake on Sacrifices
"Winnin' is problematic / People like you more when you workin' towards somethin' / Not when you have it" – Drake on Lose You
"My heart is too frozen to get broken" – Drake on Madiba Riddim
“More life, more everything” – Drake on Free Smoke
But, as I am wont to do, I’m searching for meaning in solipsistic, pop-tastic, made-for-radio “rap” music (my father would suggest that the quotations were better placed around the word music), when there might not be any - or at least not the type of meaning I'm hoping for.
Bottom Line: More Life is a made for radio, made for the club, feature-heavy playlist dripping with mass appeal.
Life is a big word, my friends.
So what does Life mean to Drake? And what does he specifically want More of?
It seems like a funny play between, “by definition, this has to be real life, which is a shared and universal experience… right? But this is also my life, which is supposed to be, like, X times better than the proletariat based on my earnings and street cred, right? Right?”
With any Drake project, the listener is given a glimpse into his inner world, but we never, ever lose track of the fact that we’re not him, and never will be. His genre of bravado keeps even his family, friends and lovers at a (un)healthy distance.
“What a time to be alive!” he chants, yet we’re not quite sure we’re meant to be included.
"I was an angry youth when I was writing Views" – Drake on Do Not Disturb
That being said, the “woe is me” paranoid bravado of Views is unbecoming compared to this feisty dance party, where we've still got all the paranoid narcissism, but at least it’s set to Caribbean lounge music beats.
So let’s talk about the beats, shall we?
On More Life, the transitions are 10/10, the producing is 10/10, the features are 10/10.
This album makes you feel great – happy even – and that life really is something that we want more of, so long as we’re able to give ourselves over to the listening experience for what it is.
Listening to Get it Together, you can imagine yourself in the club eye-fucking a hottie who actually walks over and is also feeling you!
You imagine yourself dancing. You actually dance. You’re doing slicker dance moves than Drizzy himself in the privacy of your own home, while sipping on corner store moscato, rather than Dom'ignon, but you don't even care!
And as I'm temporarily lifted from the bottomless depths of my day-to-day nihilistic tendencies, it makes me think: What do I want more of? And what the heck is this life business all about?
Well, despite my own musings being a lot less (significantly less) public-facing than Champagne Papi’s, it seems like we both want the same thing: meaning.
There’s nothing more to get out of life, except for meaning… which unfortunately is the only thing we can’t get, at least not in a concrete way.
We can pile up riches and bitches and champagne and hoes until we’ve filled the Taj Mahal, but we’re still on our own to find the meaning in it.
Maybe another album from The Boy is what The Drake Machine needs, and we’re the lucky ones who get to shut it off when our real-life Papi comes home for a quality evening together, or when we take out our earphones to listen to a 7-year-old violin prodigy playing Hallelujah at our metro stop, or our grandparents call just because.
And with that, I’ll leave you with a solid reflection and some life advice from Drizzy’s mama bear.