Lately, Drake has been called out by rappers, celebrities and even politicians. While he insists the criticism hasn’t phased him, he still seems charged up about it.
Last Sunday on episode 14 of OVO Radio, Drake dropped “Summer Sixteen,” a new single off his much-anticipated album Views from the 6.
The song begins with low-tempo psychedelic melodies, reminiscent of stereotypical Egyptian music, building to the beat drop, where Drake proclaims he’s “looking for revenge.” The snaps and snares bring together the product culminating into typical but nonetheless impressive production from Boi-1da and the team at OVO.
Jumping into the lyrics, Drake addresses his critics in a not-so-subtle way. The first verse responds to comments President Obama made regarding Drake’s unlikely chances to win in a rap battle with fellow MC Kendrick Lamar (“Tell Obama that my verses are just like the whips that he in/they bulletproof”). Drake also responds to Meek Mill’s additional diss tracks off his EP 4/4.
In these lyrics, he details the non-threat Meek poses to him, how weak Meek’s disses have been and how Meek—or any rapper for that matter—can’t be as great as him. Despite these sentiments, the actual lyrics from Drake are pedestrian at best. While a couple highlights do shine in, most lines are basic and simple.
However, Drake switches things up completely in the 2nd verse. The production of the song shifts completely, as the previous production fades out, only to fade in piano scores and African hymns setting up the beat drop. As the hymns fade out, Drake returns with the beat featuring a fast and aggressive flow. He begins the track with a bold statement: “All you boys in the new Toronto want to be me a little.”
As he spits about how these up-and-comers in Toronto can’t touch him and will never replace him, it becomes apparent he is targeting one artist in particular—Torey Lanez. Lanez is a young hip hop artist from Toronto who dissed Drake on Twitter, calling Toronto the “6.” Drake seems to lash out at Lanez indirectly in this verse. Truthfully though, if you’ve heard Lanez’s music, his style is more reminiscent of Future than Drake, making Drake’s claims of trying to be him far-fetched and invalid.
After this, he finishes by comparing himself to Jay-Z and having a bigger pool than Kanye West, basically gloating about his greatness (usual Drake lyrics).
Overall, the song features impressive production and piques interests using a switch-up method that pays dividends. The lyrical content is typical of Drake verses, at times brilliant but pulled under by pettiness and lazy flow. Despite this, the product is on par with Drake’s usual offerings, and the production alone should boast optimism for his upcoming album set to drop in April.
In the end, Drake may be petty, but he continues to provide quality singles as the public waits for Views From The 6.