After months of anticipation after seeing hit singles with “God’s Plan” and “Nice For What”, Drake has finally released his new double album Scorpion – a two-part album that showcases him singing then rapping.
Drizzy has continued his reign on hip-hop in numerous ways, continuing to innovate his sound and method of release. His last release, More Life, was deemed as a “playlist” instead of an album. Scorpion is released as a double disc which is rare to see in this day and age (shout out Seattle’s Joey Kash for just doing that on his Big Payback album). With the way they count streams these days, the previously released singles count towards the album count. With ‘God’s Plan‘ at over 800 million streams, the new album will be released with over a billion streams on day one. Crafty Drizzy. Crafty.
The overall idea of a double album is ambitious to say the least, as Drake strives to move past and confront the stereotypes and labels fans have put on him over the years. From fans making fun of his “fake” Jamaican accent on More Life to having more questions then answers on his loss to Pusha T, Drake is upfront with putting everything to rest.
On part one of Scorpion, the sonic landscape is abrasive, brutally honest, and revealing while having a smooth feel by the production at the same time. The production of the instrumentals is rather simplistic as it focuses in on Drake’s messaging rather than creating an eventful arc from start to finish. On part two, Drake maintains the same intensity but switches up the timbres of his vocals heard throughout. While part one can be described as hard-hitting and up front, the second half of the album keeps many of the same qualities but amplifies the singing side of Drake.
Early standouts after the first few listens includes “Elevate”, “Emotionless”, “8 Out Of 10” and “Peak”. Respectable standouts in regards to features can be heard in “Talk Up” featuring JAY Z and “Don’t Matter To Me” featuring Michael Jackson.
Overall, Scorpion is a significant improvement from More Life simply due to the authenticity and overall scope of the project. While his awareness of his fame and success has been at the forefront of his self-acceptance, especially within the past five years, Drake seems to have come to terms with the expectations and realities that an artist of his caliber possesses. As a result, he clearly puts the drama aside as he’s focused on creating the best music that he can make.
Backed by the eerily clean production by Noah “40” Shebib, Drake shines by showcasing versatility and dexterity of the varying tracks. While there are many high points heard on Scorpion, it does fall short on a few fronts. The first is that while the album has two distinctive parts that is intended to display separate sonic landscapes, the cohesiveness and individualistic quality of both sides doesn’t entirely hold up. This is mainly due to the production as it is highly inconsistent with sticking with a certain sound.
While it is refreshing to hear instrumentals that are incredibly locked in and tight, there are many tracks that will leave us wanting more. When we first hear each song, many of them will grab instant attention due to the overall mood and feel. When listening to the entire song many of the initial sounds we hear don’t change throughout the track. As a result, the missing piece is left in the hands of Drake, and he doesn’t completely deliver.
When compared to projects such as Nothing Was The Same, Take Care, and If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late, Scorpion falls short due to these aspects that were mentioned. This album is good enough to keep Drake relevant and at the top, but doesn’t show him at the stage of perfection as we’ve heard in the past.
Overall Grade: C+
Listen To Drake’s New Album Scorpion On Your Preferred Streaming Platform Below:
Drake – “God’s Plan”
Drake – “Nice For What”
Drake – “I’m Upset”