Tag Archives: Drake

BlocBoy JB – Look Alive ft. Drake

I was initially sceptical to review this, with over 11 million views in under a week, there’s really no denying Drake’s starpower. I was listening to Diplomatic Immunity consistently, before the stars aligned and God’s Plan really connected with me, and whilst that track continues to dominate, it goes to show that only one person can compete with Drake, and that’s himself. I almost feel like the song dropped too early, and though I’m sure Memphis rep BlocBoy couldn’t wait soon enough, with God’s Plan dominating the charts, this is clearly positioned as the new underground anthem.

For anyone that raises the point that Drake makes the song his own with the first verse and hook, not only has it introduced the world to BlocBoy JB but may I remind you of when Drake introduced a lot of people to an Atlanta group known as the Migos in similar fashion, and with hard work and consistency, see for yourself. So it’s a great opportunity for the Memphis rapper, and though Drake’s verse is indeed a standout, you naturally find yourself rapping along to JB’s flow also, and with his evident energy and charisma with the dance moves, it looks promising, so whether he becomes an official OVO member or not, it’ll be intriguing to see what he has next in store, but for now can be sure to enjoy the success as Look Alive won’t be dying down anytime soon.

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Click artwork to listen on Spotify

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Drake – Scary Hours

It was that time again, where the world stops what they’re doing to listen to the new Drake. Only Drizzy can drop a 2 track project.

I spent the end of last year listening to Views again, despite the surrounding criticism, I really liked the album, and then More Life also, they were two projects where his position and ability was questioned, and I remember how serious I took it in Do Not Disturb, when he says, “Takin’ summer off, ’cause they tell me I need recovery, Maybe gettin’ back to my regular life will humble me, I’ll be back in 2018 to give you the summary”. I felt he deserved a break, and the conviction in which he says the last line, I was sure there’s an album coming (which makes me wonder how much he actually rested?!), none the less the year has started, and he dropped two new tracks as part of Scary Hours. Starting with God’s Plan, it’s signature Drake, he’s clearly had some time to reflect, and that’s what these songs are, reflections, complete with the catchy quotables for us to caption our instagram pictures with, like, “Don’t pull up at 6am to cuddle with me”, he keeps it real, “I feel good, sometimes I don’t”, even shouting out partners Oliver and 40, and giving them props for his success, it’s the more lighthearted of the two, maybe more catering to his female audience, because on Diplomatic Immunity he gets straight to the bars. Floating over the sample-strong production, Diplomatic Immunity is synonymous in rap with the classic Dipset album, and maybe the sample has a similar feel, from a more higher plateau, and he raps as such. Addressing the doubters and rumours, whilst speaking up on his accomplishments and position, even some bars for the gossipers, “2010 was when I lost my halo, 2017 I lost a J-Lo, (A-Rod)Rotterdam trip had me on front page though..I had to lay low”, not to mention the jabs at Joe Budden, now whether that finally gets Joey back in the booth we’ll see, but what I was more intrigued by, was his displeasure at not being included in the ‘Black Excellence’ discussions, a term recently heralded by Diddy, and Joe also, so that honesty is as always appreciated, as he raises the point that he isn’t always praised for his accomplishments. If there was a criticism, it’s just ending it with “Shakira”, I’m just being picky, something about the way it ends, I don’t like, but has it stopped me from listening to it or rapping along….nope! There has not really been a rap star of Drake’s stature, he has been an open book through his music, and so it appears that he has got some things off his chest with these tracks, as he prepares to take over again with what is safe to say, the most anticipated album of the year.

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XX17 Spotify Playlist

With us closer to the end of the year, I’ve curated another playlist, this time a selection of some of the best and underrated Hip-Hop, Grime, Alternative and R&B tracks of the year, thus far. The playlist hosts American, British and French tracks, that varies in tempo and style, featuring the likes of Giggs, PartyNextDoor, Post Malone, Wale, Sampha, Toro Y Moi & many more..

[Click the image]

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Bow Wow – Can I Be Your Man ft. Lil’ Wayne

Since Bow Wow is now Lil’ Wayne’s label mate having recently signed to Cash Money records, these collaborations are expected, I’ve heard three tracks since he signed and this is the best one of all, the first was ok, second was the apparent first single ‘Every Other’ (produced by Cool & Dre), which has Bow sounding more like Drake, with a distinct Drake flow and lyricism, a good effort but the obvious comparisons do shadow the song’s positives, I think it is more so because Bow Wow is talented and the song did not justify that talent. Can I Be Your Man, however is a far better track, with or without the star feature.

The validity of this track cannot be confirmed, none the less it is a good song, a promising insight in what to expect from Bow Wow and Cash Money as a whole. Also, if nobody has realised all ready, this track seems to be about his previous lady, miss Angela Simmons, even if it is not, Bow Wow has taken his experiences in stride of his maturity and put together an honest and ‘real’ record.

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Gucci Mane – Street Cred ft. DJ Drama, Drake & Killer Mike

Well well well, hot off the press, comes the answer to who this track will belong to, seems like Gucci Mane gets this monstrous offering from Timbaland, it is from a mixtape so I do not know if it is official or not, however seems so to be Gucci Mane’s at the moment.

I am not too sure about this, I prefer hearing the solo Drake version, despite it being short, I like Killer Mike, so it is not all bad and Gucci Mane currently has quite the hype, however I honestly feel that this beat if restricted to just a mixtape has not been served justice, if anything new comes up regarding this beat, be sure that OneFaris will bring it to you.

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Timbaland – King Leon ft. Drake

With new leaks from Timbaland’s camp, it is rumoured that these tracks are from Timbaland’s upcoming project. As a Timbaland fan, I have been looking forward to hear his new sound, he emerged in dominant fashion with his last surge of hits with Nelly Furtado, Justin Timberlake and Madonna, however since then he was quiet, only for his production contribution towards Jay-Z’s Blueprint 3, tracks such as Off That ft. Drake and Venus & Mars showed some promise, a lot of the original Timbaland fans began to hope that he is back to changing the game again, even I hoped, until I heard this snippet:

Sounding like a classic Timbaland, back to doing what he does best, the clever thing about this production is the use of sounds, the organs happen to be the same sounds used for Madonna’s 4 minutes ft. Justin Timberlake. It is the kind of beat to put fear into other producers, the kind of production that will inspire how most of the songs will sound, as many attempt to emulate. Toronto’s Drake had worked with Timbo for Jay-Z’s album already, but he only featured on the chorus, so this snippet is an exclusive to the industry, Drake seems to do no wrong at the moment, this is one of my favourite tracks from him already and I have not even heard it all.

Here are the other leaks:

I like it, but more for concept that production, two artists of such status should create better, good but not great.

It is different, more catering his Pop audience, I am hoping that these leaks are to generate interest and that there is more to come, I am not in anyway saying that they are bad, I just personally feel that he can do a lot better.

Who knows, with time, I may have one of these on repeat.

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Birdman – Money To Blow ft. Drake & Lil’ Wayne

It is looking like Birdman’s forthcoming album ‘Always Strapped‘ might just be his best yet, with bangers like Got A Bitch ft. Rick Ross and Written On Her ft. Jay Sean, now leaks Money To Blow ft. Lil’ Wayne & Drake, his albums heavily depend on features, so it comes to no surprise that his new effort will also be.

Birdman – Money To Blow ft. Lil’ Wayne Drake:

This is not anything special, in all honesty I think his collaboration with Rick Ross is far better, however, when you have heavyweights like Lil’ Wayne and man of the moment Drake on a track then something good has to come out of it and it certainly did in this case.

Drake steals the show as he is doing on most of his features, as much as I do not like to join in with anything that becomes over-hyped, I have to give Drake his credit where due, he backs his status up well, on this record, the Cash Money trio brag to the fullest, Lil’ Wayne’s verse is fairly standard which strangely balances with Birdman’s, leaving Drake to take the spotlight with his verse and chorus, the negative of this track is that you do not even realise Birdman has a verse, it kind of gets squashed in between the Young Money boys’ features.

Money To Blow will no doubt help balance the album out which at the same time will make the track standout more, it is not fair to be too critical on this song as it does what it was intended to do, it sounds like a sequel to the chart topping Always Strapped with a new cast member which really makes the difference. Expect more records of similar stature from Cash Money founder Baby aka Birdman.

I think my own expectations have got the better of me, it is a good song but the beat is not as epic as the previous release ‘Always Strapped’, nor the other release ‘Got A B****’, but the video is a good look, nothing too over the top, a good buzz single, with cameos from Jay Sean and Mack Maine, Cash Money are on a steep uprise, Lil’ Wayne went platinum, Jay Sean has now gone platinum, up next is Drake who is expected to go Platinum, Cash Money records are really at their peak, so look out for more big things.

Fáris Rating:
7.5/10

Cash Money Millionaires Birdman and Jay Sean

Cash Money Millionaires Birdman and Jay Sean

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DRAKE – FOREVER ft. Kanye West, Lil’ Wayne & Eminem

The 2009 Monster anthem, taken from the soundtrack for NBA MVP LeBron James’ new movie receives the Hype treatment for it’s new video.

This is definitely something special, a momentus occasion in Hip-Hop, Drake has a buzz like no other, it began fading but this will certainly push right back up there again, Kanye West is dealing with more controversy after his VMA stunt, Lil’ Wayne is Lil’ Wayne and Eminem goes in to prove that he still is a major force in music full stop.

Hype Williams goes all out with this, full of effects, props, camera angles, the whole lot, Eminem really goes in, this is the Em that we love, cameos by Slaughterhouse seem to have some sort of effect, they just stand there but see it this way, Slaughterhouse are considered Hip-Hop’s most feared collective at the moment and they are standing ‘behind’ Eminem, it justifies his status.

Forever has a feeling to it, each artist brings their own presence to it and the video captures it nicely.

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Jay-Z – A Star Is Born ft. J. Cole

Taken from Jay-Z’s recent success Blueprint 3, this track stands out for many reasons.

A Star Is Born, produced by Kanye West & NO I.D, is a part dedication to all the successful emcees to have come through, whilst being a statement of Jay’s longevity as an artist, as many of those mentioned have not reached the same amount of consistent success as the Brooklyn legend, however this track is also the official ROC nation introduction of J. Cole

J. Cole is an extremely talented emcee, although names such as Kid Cudi, Drake and Asher Roth are often mentioned as saviours of Hip-Hop, they are talented but J. Cole is pretty much the definition of Hip-Hop, best described as Jay-Z and Nas in one, J. Cole’s ‘the warm-up’ mixtape helped create a stronger foundation for him as an artist, his only negative is that he might be too good for mainstream, but with Jay-Z taking him under his wing he is in the best position, he reminds me of Jay-Z with his clever wordplay and distinctive flow. In a ‘passing the torch’ manner, Jay-Z introduces J. Cole on this track and he does not disappoint, he takes this oppurtunity in both hands, this is a similar position to when Kanye West featured on Blueprint 2, however Kanye’s verse was quite dissapointing and lacked the charisma and metaphors that we hear from him now, so it is quite amazing if you think how much J. Cole will improve, already good enough to go against some of the best, he is one of the sparks in the bright future of Hip-Hop.

Click image to visit his myspace and hear more

Click image to visit his myspace and hear more

The making of the cover for Blueprint 3:

I wonder if Jay has that somewhere in his house?!

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Wiz Khalifa – Get Some

Wiz Khalifa has been extremely consistent with his music, he has not received the same exposure as the likes of Wale and Drake, however, with their success creating intrest in the younger artists, Khalifa’s consistency has kept him prominent and in line to get the respect and acknowledgement that he deserves.

Get Some is a good example of Wiz Khalifa, the beat is diverse, the chorus is more of a dance sound with a pitch-altered sample, whereas the main body of the track is a modern electro meets hip-hop base on which he does not hesitate to get lyrical, but this track is more about feeling than talent so he does hold back.

Wiz Khalifa is who the likes of Bow Wow and Soulja Boy aim to be, somebody who is ‘cool’, accepted by a variety of audiences, You can see the impact he has had on Soulja Boy, I say that because Wiz Khalifa has been around for a while, just underground and I guess with Soulja Boy being a mainstream artist, he is making it acceptable for someone like Wiz to breakthrough.

This track is not the best I have heard, but it is different, something that relates to the artist Wiz Khalifa himself.

A song more representing Khalifa’s presence as an emcee is Dreamer:

Click image to visit his myspace to hear more..

Click image to visit his myspace to hear more..

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