Six Standouts On Drake’s New ‘VIEWS’ Album

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If Twitter exploding into madness Thursday night didn’t tip you off, “Views” has indeed landed. And spanning 20 songs and almost an hour and a half, its arrival is sending Drizzy diehards into a tailspin. With such an album that has generated a nearly unprecedented amount of hype over the course of several months, the impulse is to consume the album immediately upon its release. The reality is, it take a few days or weeks to fully process this album. On the flip side, it is easier to identify the most clever, insightful, memorable lyrical moments. Here are six standouts.

“9”

This introspective tribute to Drizzy’s home turf finds the rapper throwing humility to the wind as he rolls through the streets of Toronto, reflecting on how he’s influenced the city, especially its hip-hop scene. (“The 6” refers to Toronto’s two area codes.) “I turn the 6 upside down, it’s a 9 now,” he raps. “I made a decision last night that I would die for it.”

“Hype”

A bruising, bouncing track that wouldn’t have felt out of place on “If You’re Reading This. . .,” “Hype” is a sonic sucker punch aimed at Drake’s assorted “enemies.” Who’s on the hit list this time around? Noted rival Meek Mill, whom Drake famously eviscerated on “Back to Black,” seems like a good bet. “I hate a rapper especially,” he offers. “They feel the same, but they hide it/ They just discuss it in private/ Don’t get along man, we tried it.” Lest “Hype” serve as another diss track, the rapper claims he’s washing his hands of all the chatter surrounding his creative process. As Drake puts it on the hypnotic hook: “Me, I’m just done, done, done, done, done, done.”

“With You (feat. PartyNextDoor)”

“Views” is Drake’s party from start to finish. But OVO Sound signee PartyNextDoor almost steals this yearning love letter as the pair team up to chart the heartache of watching their women walk away, his deep melodic tones lending the song a sensual bedrock. “It’s about us right, now, girl,” he croons, ready to commit. “Where you going?” The album sways back and forth from rap to R&B, and this is one of the tightest offerings in the latter category.

“Childs Play”

Few would dispute that Drake knows how to tell a story. And this recollection of a petty lover’s quarrel at — where else? — a Cheesecake Factory is one of the Drakiest ballads we’ve heard in quite some time. “Why you gotta fight with me at Cheesecake?” he raps, legitimately (and somewhat hilariously) inflamed. “You know I love to go there.” Enlisting a terrific New Orleans bounce sample, he seems caught between being relatable and ridiculous, which might very well be the Drake aesthetic.

“Too Good (feat. Rihanna)”

If there’s a bona fide summer smash out of “Views,” this dancehall-influenced earworm might be it. Fans have learned to expect a steamy good time whenever Rihanna, one of Drizzy’s muses, shows up to put their red-hot chemistry to use. For their fourth collaboration, the pair riff on the tortured-romance setup of “Take Care” while continuing to harness the tropical vibes of “Work.” The result’s both playful and provocative — though fans hoping for another out-of-studio romance between the two might be disappointed by Rihanna’s mid-track kiss-off. “And last night I think I lost my patience/ Last night I got as high as your expectations,” she sings of a crumbling relationship. “Last night, I came to a realization/ And I hope you can take it.”

“Views”

The album’s title track also feels like its most fully realized. Drake toasts his success and gets inside his head while wrapping up the album’s themes, from “running through the 6” to acknowledging the legacy of his countless lady-loves (“My exes made some of my favorite music”). It all climaxes (the song, but also the album) with one of the most self-conscious yet self-assured admissions we’ve heard from Drake: “If I was you, I wouldn’t like me either.”

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