Nick’s Picks: Drake- ‘If You’re Reading This it’s Too Late’

Nicholas Filca, Online Editor

There’s this Discovery credit card commercial that runs on TV here and there about a guy who hates surprises. To everybody’s “surprise,” the man is shocked to find a goat in his room after expressing his hate for events like this. Why am I mentioning this you ask? Well, Drake decided to pull a total goat move and surprise the public with his newest mixtape “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late.”

Drake has been building up his upcoming LP “Views from the Six” so much that virtually nobody expected him to drop any music anytime soon. Alas, I, the man who hates surprises, absolutely adored this one. If that Discovery commercial would have resulted in the man hugging the goat, then that would be the mirror image of me when “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late” dropped.

After calming myself down a little bit, I decided to play the mixtape, beginning with the song “Legend.” The track includes Drake once again repeating how influential he’s been on the music industry and describes that if his death were to come at this exact moment, he would forever be referred to as a “Legend.” Is it cocky? Sure. Is it bold? Yes. Does he pull it off? Absolutely. While this may be too aggressive for some listeners, this stretch of pure confidence on this track is great way to open an album.

“If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late” maintains its energy for the next few tracks including a song of the aforementioned adjective “Energy.” This pace is most evident in the 4th track, “Know Yourself.” This song includes a beat/tempo switch midway through, and on first listen I promise you I got goosebumps. Drake rides this beat with such recurring confidence during the change, and right off the bat this album is already convincing you that Drake is indeed a “Legend.” Drake paints a picture of him “Riding through the six,” (an abbreviation for the Toronto area code) with his OVO companions. This track is by far my favorite due to its uniqueness and just like the mixtape in general, catches you by surprise.

Drake isn’t afraid to address problems going on outside and inside of the studio either, and he lets you know exactly that with the track “No Telling” which targets his label and the lack of compensation he and his companions have been affected by. Situations such as “Envelopes coming’ in the mail, letter opener I’m hoping’ for a check again, ain’t no tellin’” are put under a microscope in this track.

The “6” shows up often in this album, showing Drake’s love for where he came from. The tracks including this abbreviated zip code are all heartfelt and address Drake’s thought as openly as possible.

The raw emotion shown in this album is its greatest virtue. Its heartfelt, openly confident, and just plain fun. I always like to highlight that aspect because it in fact is one of the most important qualities of an album. Sometimes you can listen to an album and just sense that the artist is thinking about the contract, and not the art.

If you’re not a fan of Drake, which many aren’t, I say give this one a shot. Many tease Drake for his soft and sensitive content, but this mixtape is the exact opposite. “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late” is one heck of a ride.