Nothing Was the Same • Drake | Teen Ink

Nothing Was the Same • Drake MAG

January 25, 2019
By SILVER, Sacramento, California SILVER, Sacramento, California
9 articles 0 photos 3 comments

On September 24, 2013, Drake dropped the legendary album that solidified him as the number one artist in the industry. “Nothing Was The Same” collected awards like The Juno Award for rap recording of the year, was nominated for a Grammy, and spent close to 300 weeks on the Billboard 100. The album features artists such as Big Sean, Jhene Aiko, Jay-Z, Sampha, and The Weeknd. Mixing downtempo R&B, hip-hop, and soul with introspective, emotionally open lyrics, popular songs like “Started from the Bottom” and “Pound Cake” cause Drake to be known as a musician who shares his feelings.

The album was released with two covers – one is an image of Drake as a child, and the other cover shows him as an adult. His younger self is looking ahead at the future, as the Drake we know now does the same. The older Drake looks back as if to reflect on how far he’s come. The covers’ background shows clouds and a blue sky which inspires a “head in the clouds” type symbolism.

Track one, and the introduction to the album, is entitled “Tuscan Leather.” The song  explains Drakes’ growing confidence as an artist and also as a person. It’s an atmospheric and free-form hip-hop track with samples from the song “I Have Nothing” by the late Whitney Houston. “Tuscan Leather” is a hyper-focused state-of-the-union address about where Drake is in his life. He talks about his expanding ambitions in lines like, “On a mission tryna shift the culture, while also challenging those who don’t believe in him: “Just give it time, we’ll see who around a decade from now.” In my opinion this is the best track on the album.

Many of the album’s tracks delve into Drake’s relationships with women. Songs like “From Time,” featuring Jhene Aiko, is a down-tempo R&B song composed with finger snapped beats and piano. Drake seems to confess how he was often selfish in past relationships, and how he went through periods of immaturity and arrogance. He mentions one women in particular: “The one that I needed was Courtney from Hooters on Peachtree. I’ve always been feeling like she was the piece to complete me.” “From Time” is one of Drake’s greatest tracks because the whole song introspective and deep. Nick Cartucci of Entertainment Weekly called it “real talk of the highest order.”

The best aspect of the album is how Drake combines love R&B with sometimes savage rap. The track entitled “All Me” featuring Big Sean and 2 Chainz is one of the coldest rap tracks I’ve ever heard by Drake. The song hit number 20 on the billboard top 100 and has a defiant lyric about his massive amounts of money, steady stream of nameless women, and his power to stay on top of the rap scene.

“The Language,¨ a song produced by Boi-1da features an outro from YMCMB´s Birdman. Here the musicians discuss the conflicts with Cash Money Records (their record company) due to Drake not wanting to premier on the album ¨Rich Gang.” Drake says on the chorus, ¨Cash Money Records forever, I’m always big-timin’. B*tch I came up right under Stunna.¨ Again, Drake shows that he can be savage and tell it like it is.

The combination of great music, introspective themes, and lyrics that are brutally honest turn “Nothing Was the Same” into a masterpiece.

The author's comments:

my honest opinion about possibly the greatest drake album ever.

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