Young Money Records
If anyone had asked me about my expectations for Canadian-born rapper Drake’s second studio album Take Care a week or so ago, my answer would have been one of positivity and excitement. With a platinum debut album and former success in producing chart-topping hits for artists such as Alicia Keys and Mary J. Blige, I was convinced Drake wouldn’t fall at the second album hurdle which has taken so many before him. Alas, I was wrong.
Despite having arguably one of the most recognisable voices in the hip-hop community, sparse arrangements on near to every track cause Drake’s voice to croon unbearably on ‘Marvin’s Room’ and ‘The Real Her’. Although he sets an assertive mood describing how he ‘killed everybody in the game last year’ on ‘Over My Dead Body’, his lyrics include little material that doesn’t talk about his own self-absorbed greatness, showing a gaping hole in the rapper’s talent.
Take Care does have some redeeming moments however. ‘Lord Knows’ shows Drake effectively experimenting with gospel backing vocals and leaves you wondering why he didn’t bother to further try out new sounds. Similarly the album’s title track, which features Rihanna and Jamie XX, shows how he seems to be more successful with a collaboration safety net and the help of other artists.
Nevertheless it’s the lack of courage to branch out and experiment that really kills this album and makes it a victim of ‘once you’ve heard one track, you’ve heard them all’.
Drake feat. Rihanna – Take Care