Tuesday, October 25, 2016

New music from Drake and the unfortunate diss track

   This weekend everyone's fave Drizzy dropped not one, not two, but four new songs on the eve of his 30th birthday. Two of which "Sneakin'" and "Fake Love" are available for streaming on Tidal. Drake is doing what he does best one all of these tracks, playing it safe, remaining mediocre and giving the fans what they love. "Fake" is the Drake theme of the year and forever as he proclaims "Smile in my face, whole time tryna take my place" lyrics from The Ojay's classic "Backstabbers". "Sneakin'" takes a a different route as this is a song for the streets, reminiscent of the feel SchoolBoy Q has been going, this is elevated trap music. A feature from upcoming rapper 21 Savage also helps.
   The track that has stirred up controversy is "Two Birds One Stone" on which he disses both rapper Pusha T and our beloved KiD CuDi. The lyrics directed at Scott are what's riding most listeners gears and go as follows:
"You were the Man on the Moon, now you go through your phases
Life of the angry and famous Rap like I know I’m the greatest and give you the tropical flavors
Still never been on hiatus
You stay xan and perked up so when reality set in you don’t gotta face it."
     Earlier this month KiD CuDi checked himself into rehab for depression and suicidal urges, he notified fans and followers publicly via Facebook and twitter. CuDi was open honest and apologetic in his account as he repeated "I'm sorry" as if he had let his fans down. Most consumers who may not listen to CuDi's music were probably unaware of his prolonged ever-present battle with depression and struggle with self medicating. Self-Medicating is a symptom of most mental and social disorders, whether related to depression or forms of PTSD, commonly where those "suffering" abuse drugs and alcohol to cope. Drake's comments struck listeners as a direct jab at CuDi's metal health, which is a big no no. Drake's timing could not have been worse. Yes, he is responding to CuDi's criticism of his craft via twitter but that was before CuDi checked himself into rehab. For Drake to say this after CuDi's befitting sadness was made very well known publicly is insensitive and tacky. It is also pretty lack-luster being that he does not actually address KiD CuDi's original statement, instead he has some harsh criticism for the lonely stoner's lifestyle with some not very well thought out hits below the belt. Diss tracks are an important part of hip-hop but I think they should at least be good, what Drizzy had to say does not make much sense in content nor context.

     However, as an avid KiD CuDi fan (since day1) and someone who is dealing with major depression, I am not necessarily offended by Drizzy's comments. I am disappointed because those bars are weak, less than mediocre, and much less than creative. Drake poked fun at Scott for something that he has already told the world about himself, that is not much of a diss, that is something you say when you have nothing else to say. To me it seems Drake is still riding off of his "Back to Back" high. "Back to Back" being the diss track directed at Meek Mill after Meek called Drake out for not writing his own lyrics. Last summer that song was everywhere, Drake is currently trying to protect his own brand and get that kind of popularity again. "Two Birds One Stone" falls completely flat. The earlier verse in the track directed at Pusha T is also quite awkward, Aubrey is taking all of the L's with this one.

  If anything this shines light on how ignorant many people are on mental illness, especially in Hip-Hop. Hopefully it sparks conversation about the bigger picture, and not blow over as a simple petty rap beef.

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