Album Review: So-so view on Drake’s ‘Views’

Mohamed Bafakih, Contributing Editor

Four studio albums and seven years into his music career, and the question still remains: Are we going to get the Drake that provides therapy sessions to help get us over an ex, or the Drake that will bring lyrically-decent bars with his exquisite flow.

His first album since “Nothing Was the Same,” which released in 2013, “Views” gives us a view of Toronto’s own through his experience dealing with fame, fortune and women – along with his roots of his hometown.

All a little too familiar, right?

As a veteran in the music game now and pushing 30, there should be an establishment of what his message is, which is what Iwas expecting to see more of from Drizzy in his latest project.

Track No. 19 of 20, which is ironically titled “Views,” Drake said it best by saying, ‘…My exes made some of my favorite music.’

Although that particular style relays to many of his followers, as “Views” is expected to sell one million copies in the United States alone in its first week, according to Chart News, don’t state that “Views already a classic” before we see you end up taking it back.

Ifigured I’d use the recent Toronto Raptors-Indiana Pacers series to sum up why Drake would take that statement back.

After the Raptors defeated the Pacers at the Air Canada Centre in Game 5 on April 26 – three days before “Views” released – Drake posted a picture of Pacers’ Paul George with a teardrop emoji and a caption that read, ‘Iknew you were scared,’ before he deleted it moments later.

But ultimately you see the passion that goes into the city of Toronto, and as the city’s ambassador, the 6 signifies what Drake means to the 416 and what the 416 means to Drake.

In perhaps my favorite track, “Weston Road Flows,” the recognition of his upbringing with his boys in Toronto and how loyalty can remain constant gives listeners that real understanding and proof of who and what is real.

The producer on that track, Noah “40” Shebib – who also produced 11 other songs on “Views” set the tone on “Weston Road Flows,” as its sleek, rhythmic beat meshed perfectly well with Drake’s rapping ability.

“Views” has a pretty fluid balance between rap and r&b, with even a slight mix of some rock beats in the opening track, and reggae.

What better place to be from than Toronto, however, to show the influence and value of different nationalities, as Toronto is perhaps one of the most diverse cities?

Prior to the release of “Views,” Drake announced he’ll be going on tour with Future this summer, so the demand for the album will continue to skyrocket as songs from “Views” such as “Grammy’s” which features Future will be a hot hit at the Summer Sixteen Tour.

Moving forward, it will be interesting to see what Drake will continue to display, but one thing is for sure: “Views” is in the rearview now, and fans of Drake should consider leaning toward what they want to hear from the veteran moving forward because a 30-year-old rapper should carry on more influence to the general hip-hop, rap, and r&b heads.

(Three out of five stars)