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If 2010 was the year when Drake's underground grind came to a close, 2011 was the year when he affirmed his status as a Rap superstar. After flooding the game with a bag of featured verses and songs, he brought 2011 to a close with his second album, "Take Care". The Canadian rapper and singer, who's signed to Lil Wayne's Young Money record label, equipped his sophomore offering with just as much star power. Rick Ross, Nicki Minaj, Andre 3000 and his label boss (plus his label's label boss, Birdman) assist on this all-important record.
What's so good about "Take Care" is that Drake finds a way to tap into every side to his personality (and varied musical characteristics). From the lead single, "Headlines", right through to the smoother "Crew Love" and the experimental, yet Pop-orientated title track, there's a lot to get into. For those who've seen him through every step of his career, he's just adding to the arsenal of abilities he has under his belt to impress everyone. Some might just find that the party starters like "HYFR", "Under Ground Kings" and "Make Me Proud" are enough to entertain them, but there's so much more to him on offer. As much as he's ridiculed for focusing on them, the stuff he has for the girls ("Practice", "Marvins Room, "The Real Her") is among the best he's done, even if it sounds a little like Craig David could have done a couple of them.
The most obvious issue which people often point out on "Take Care" is that he gets overly emotional on some subject matter, but you shouldn't be listening to a Drake album if you're going to complain about that. He expresses himself well and has recorded a very solid release to reflect it. If anything, the only weaknesses are the fact that he's still not the best singer around and that others could take his place on the hooks, but it doesn't restrict the album from hitting all the right spots. Drake knows what he's doing here and only non-fans will have a reason to get bogged-down in the technicalities on why it's not 100% on top form from start to finish.
All in all, you're given another quintessential Drake record. It's a body of work to get excited about and it's packed to the brim with tunes to get fully hyped up about. "Take Care" is a diverse project and as well as filling it with a handful of obligatory things for the core 'urban' crowd, he manages to show his musical vision. From the choices of producers (which ranges from his in-house side man, 40, to T-Minus and even Jamie xx. There's a lot to dig into here and you'll be able to sit on this for months and still find hidden elements to show off the subtleties in his songwriting, so it's just a matter of giving it enough time to do what it's meant to. This seems more like a sequel "So Far Gone" than "Thank Me Later", but it doesn't make it any less effective.
How you view Take Care, the sophomore album by Toronto superstar Aubrey "Drake" Graham, is dependent on how you view Drake the artist. This album is unlikely to alter the opinion of the two conflicting responses to Drakes minimalist, at times self indulgent, experimentation with raps base elements. There are those that love Drake citing his strong breakthrough mixtape so far gone as the high point of what Drake can do. There are others who find his self obsessed lyrics and distinctive voice and style annoying and are put off by his legions of teenage girl fans that recite every lyric to pop hits like "fancy" and "best you've ever had" from his disappointing thank me later debut album.
This album is a vast improvement upon thank me laters blueprint, dropping the majority of the weak radio single style songs and adding a harder more embittered edge to Drake's persona after two years of huge fame. Modesty is not Drakes strong point, which often grates on those not partial to the canadian, with brag lines like "i'm the greatest I said that before I knew I was" (Underground kings) and unbelievable claims "make someone around me catch a body like that" (headlines) cheapen verses that would otherwise be incredibly honest. Such honesty sets him apart from other rappers with the song "look what you've done" becoming one of the highlights of the album paying tribute to his grandmother and uncle who got him to the position he is in now. Some of the concerns about thank me later still remain however. The worst verses on the album are provided by members of Drakes young money crew with little wayne, birdman and nikki minaj ("I'm a star... sherriffs badge", really?) embarrassing themselves proving that Drake is in with the wrong crowd. Rick Ross and andre 3000 provide the two stellar guest verses on the project, with rihanna and the weeknd being the singing guests. On the whole Drake is more than capable of holding up both the singing and the rapping parts of each song dimingishing the need for the numerous guest appearences common on big budget projects from major labels in recent years.
Overall Take Care is a good effort from an artist with the potential to make a classic when he is older and more mature. It won't win over any of his so called "haters" but this caters well to his established fan base, and that is the best Drake can do at this early stage of his career.
Take Care album by rapper/singer Drake from Toronto, Canada
The album is produced by Young money Records, an extremely successful music label owned by rapper Birdman. Other artists signed to the label also include stars like Lil Wayne, Nicki Minaj and Busta Rhymes, so you can tell the quality of the music produced here.
Labelled with a Parental Guidance however drake appeals to people of all ages and is played regularly on radio stations and music channels such as Kiss and MTV.
1. Over My Dead Body - A slow beat with lyrics about his career and life. 6/10
2. Shot For Me - Another slow instrumental about an ex-girlfriend that didn't stick around to see his success. 8/10
3. Headlines - A faster happy song suitable for radios and clubs. 8/10
4. Crew Love (Feat. The Weeknd) - a decent feature with lyrics about his life past, present and future. 6/10
5. Take Care (Feat. Rihanna) - excellent love song with a great feature from the biggest female artist in the world at the moment. 8/10
6. Marvin's Room
Buried Alive (Interlude) (Feat. Kendrick Lamar) - A classic love song by drake that has been remixed by several artists, showing the quality of the song. 9/10
7. Underground Kings - a song about his day to day life. 6/10
8. We'll Be Fine (Feat. Birdman) - A bass filled beat with lyrics about things going on around him featuring label owner Birdman. 6/10
9. Make Me Proud (Feat. Nicki Minaj) - A rap song about a certain female and also featuring superstar female rapper Nicki Minaj, terrible feature though. 7/10
10. Lord Knows (Feat. Rick Ross) - great vocals on the instrumental, faster beat than usual featuring rap giant Rick Ross talking about the high life. 9/10
Good Ones Go (Interlude) - probably the worst song on the album singing/rapping about women and the fame, slow instrumental. 4/10
12. Doing It Wrong - another relaxed instrumental featuring singer Stevie Wonder. Very emotional track about love. 7/10
13. The Real Her (Feat. Lil Wayne & Andre 3000) - featuring rap king lil Wayne and Andre 300 this is a great song about having a close relationship with a women. 6/10
14. HYFR (Hell Yeah Fuckin' Right) (Feat. Lil Wayne) - a cocky song by Drake and Lil Wayne. 8/10
15. Look What You've Done - An emotional song about someone who helped him achieve everything he has. 8/10
16. Practice - A happy relaxed instrumental about a beautiful woman that he wants. 7/10
17. The Ride - An old school instrumental with lyrics about life and the people in it. 6/10
Compared to most artists producing similar music I feel this album was let down. Drake seemed to use the same flow on most tracks and wasn't very creative with his music. I feel that the features from other big artists, such as Rihanna definitely increased the popularity of this album and kept it afloat. The music almost made it seem as if Drake cannot be bothered anymore and isn't putting in the effort into his music as he used to. Maybe he created too much of a hype at the beginning of his career and cannot live up to his previous standards, hopefully he proceeds to improve on his music.
With a price tag of £8.99 I fair it is fairly reasonable due to the quality of the production and the artists level of fame, he could potentially charge more. With 268.94 million sales it just shows how popular this album has become, however I believe this is only due to Drakes level of fame and the music label he is signed by.
To sum up the album I believe if you want to purchase a fairly relaxed style of music just to chill out to at home then this could be for you. If you are like me though, and you listen to a lot of music you will understand that there is definitely better music out there to spend time listening too. An overall 6/10 is what I would award this album, due to the lack of effort and because the style of music on the album does not vary much from track to track.
To improve I believe the album needs more of a variation in the tracks and a lot more effort needed to be put in by drake on his lyrics and how he says them.
Take Care is Canadian Artist Drake's second studio album (his first was Thank Me Later), it is a really cool album with a reall Hip Hop, RnB and Pop feel to it and features lots of well known artists such as Rihanna, Jay Z, Nicki Minaj and Lil Wayne.
There are a total of 18 songs on this album, here is the track listing:
1. Over My Dead Body
2. Shot For Me
4. Crew Love Ft. The Weeknd
5. Take Care Ft. Rihanna
6. Marvins Room - Buried Alive (Interlude)
7. Buried Alive Interlude
8. Underground Kings
9. We'll Be Fine Ft. Kendrick Lamar
10. Make Me Proud ft. Nicki Minaj
11. Lord Knows Ft. Rick Ross
12. Cameras/ Good Ones Interlude
13. Doing It Wrong Ft. Stevie Wonder
14. The Real Her Ft. Andre 3000 & Lil Wayne
15. HYFR Ft. Lil Wayne
16. Look What You've Done
18. The Ride
My Favourite Songs
Take Care Ft Rihanna
This is a slower song with a more pop/dance feeling to it, it is about wanting to take care of someone who you has been unlucky in love, there is a really cool beat to this song , it builds and the engery within it grows until the finish. This song features Rihanna, who is one of my favourite artists at the moment. I like this song as it is a little different to the other songs on this album.
Make Me Proud ft Nicki Minaj
This is a fun and catchy song about being proud of your partner, it is fast paced and fun and quite sexy but it has quite a cheeky element to it as well. This song features Nicki Minaj, and these two artists sound really well together as they have a quite similar style of music, this is my absolute favourite song on the album and I think it's definitely worth a listen, especially if you are a Drake fan.
This is a slower song where Drake shows off his singing voice as well as his rapping talent, it quite a dance fell to it. In this song he tells his story about how he became a rapper and how he still loves the people he was friends with before he became famous, this is a quite a nice song and is really easy to listen to.
The Rest of the Album
In this album Drake mostly raps, but he also sings and has a really easy to listen to voice. I really enjoyed this album and would prefer it to his first album Thank Me Later, it has a really cocky and cool feeling to it, but also is quite easy listening. I can't really say there are any songs on this album that I don't like, and there is a good mix between fun and sexy songs and slower songs.
Price and Availability
I bought my copy of Take Care for £9 in HMV, though you could probably buy it online for cheaper, I this was an ok price for an album as I have got quite a bit of listening out of it and normally put it on when I am exercising or driving about.
I think that this album was a really good buy for me, as a previous Drake fan I got exactly what I expected as the music has a similar feeling to his previous album Thank Me Later, however I think I prefer this album to his first attempt. I am really glad that I bought this album and think that if you like Hip Hop, RnB, Rap style music you will enjoy Take Care. Overall I would give this album 5 out of 5 stars.
*also on ciao under lorrainek90
I have always been a flexible listener of music of many genres, rap, hip hop, dance, pop, rock etc and had come to hear of Drake as his songs were always playing on the radio whenever I am on my daily commute.
The only artists albums I have ever happily bought are Eminem's and so with the growing popularity of Drake from friends and family and rave reviews all over twitter I decided to purchase his album on itunes about a month ago, and about half of the songs have been repeated on my ipod for ages ever since. He has an infectious voice, although his raps are not as substantive as other rappers out there currently, he is on the well known YMCMB label, which is known for its catchy anthems and current trend setting quotes...e.g. YOLO! (You only Live Once!)
1. Over My Dead Body
- Intro song to the album sets the tone for a smooth album, with a jazzy feel, good for sitting down, not really one to get up and dance.
2. Shot For Me
- A bit of an arrogant track, his singing has definitely been autotuned, as he sings for about the first half of the track but it has a good rhythm. Not as catchy as other songs on this album.
- Not sure why it is called headlines, but as the lead single off this new album it sure made headlines as it introduced his fans to the jist of what this album would represent, an album with Drake's attitude, flavour and image all over it. When it comes on, its bound to get people moving! And always has me singing along! Chorus is a bit lazy "that's just something they know, they know, they know, they know, they know....etc" but as always that makes it even more catchy!
4. Crew Love (ft the Weeknd)
- Featuring the Weeknd (pronounced the Weakened) who is part of Drakes OVOXO (Drake = OVO : Octobers Very Own from his birthday and The Weeknd = XO) label, the Weeknd has a soulful voice, and the beat will always get your shoulders swaying and singing along.
5. Take Care (ft Rihanna)
Name of the album, this song samples Gil Scott-Heron track "I'll take care of you". With Rihanna on the hook, it has a bumping beat that will get all bobbing their heads and tapping their feet!
6. Marvin's Room
- An emotional song about a guy calling an ex after they have broken up...key lyrics "f*** that new guy that you love so bad, I know you still think about the times we had...." Not sure who Marvin is referencing to but anyone who has been in a relationship and find's out their ex is now seeing someone else can easily relate to this song! Very slow paced and Drake knows how to get you singing along to an anthem!
7. Buried Alive Interlude
- 2 and a half minutes long as an interlude, (although he doesn't actually come on the track until 40 seconds in) he speaks (no, not raps or sings even) about some random stuff....women, clubs, cars etc....Its a bit random, but helps take up extra space on the track list I guess!
8. Under Ground Kings
- A typical rap really, has a bit of a 90s vibe, definitely one of his songs with random lyrics talking about women, money and his fame. Average but not one of his best :(
9. We'll Be Fine (ft Birdman)
- With Birdman, (who doesn't actually say much on this track, but talk about "gangsta s*** at the end of the song!) founder of Cash Money label, the beat is distinctive of his songs, very hard beat and typical of an american club banger.
10. Make Me Proud (ft Nicki Minaj)
- Nicki Minaj is also on the same label as Drake and whenever they do a track together it's always a top hit and this one doesn't disappoint... it's a popular one in the club and has a good up tempo, r&b vibe to it.
11. Lord Knows (ft Rick Ross)
- One of the longest songs on this album at 5 minutes, 10 seconds, Rick Ross and Drake always have a winning combination, and fans of good rap music will like this song, almost sounds like it has a gospel choir playing in the back ground for the hook throughout, but it is a solid song (although not very memorable as I never remember it's on my ipod!)
12. Cameras/Good Ones Go Interlude
- One of Drake's terrible songs that lasts an excruciating 6 and half minutes. He says nothing relevant and his voice sounds half asleep! Not sure how it made it's way onto the album! Vaguely talking about cameras, but his voice always trails off after saying "how you mean..."
13. Doing It Wrong
- A powerful song of Drake's which gives you some insight on perhaps his relationship turmoil in the past and the ending of a relationship...some of the chorus is..."you'll say you love me, and I'll end up lying and say I love you too....but I need someone different, you know it, oh oh, we both know it". Maybe it is because I can personally relate to this song and similarly with some of my friends, why I like it so much . It has a simple beat, but it's the words that are evocative and ensure this song gets replayed numerous times
14. The Real Her (ft Lil Wayne)
- A bit of a boring song, when I saw song title and who was featured I expected a bit more of an upbeat song but it was another song which sounded a bit whiny to be honest! Could be because it is 14th on the list and by time I get to this song its a bit too slow paced, but if you're in a slow jam mood, you'll love it.
15. Look What You've Done
- A bit of a boring melody, with the lyrics not having much relevance and almost like Drake not having much to say but repeating "Look What You've Done" which is a bit bland....
16. HYFR (Hell Yeah F***** Right) (ft Lil Wayne)
- HYFR being one of the songs off this album that has created a wave of followers saying this catchphrase in relation to anything and everything they like! A 'do what you like" and not what people tell you. Drake actually seems to put some effort in this track, rapping fast for the first verse and Lil Wayne on this song adds to the buzz as he has his distinct style of rap. The song is basically about sticking two fingers up to whoever and having a good time!
- Strange as he is singing about a stripper I'm sure but this song is darn catchy! I'm sure it's played in every strip joint across the US and may even spread over here. It's quite weird hearing drake talking to a woman telling her to "back her ass up" but somehow it fits. Any woman who hears it I'm sure will wanna do a dance for Drake as the song actually makes you wanna grind him (sorry for the mental image!) and his voice just sounds so soothing and luring...creepy how he can actually express it just on this song alone!
18. The Ride
- Sticking with the whiny theme (about women and fame etc) of a lot of the other songs on this album, this song pretty much follows suit. Easily skippable.
19. The Motto (Bonus Track) (ft Lil Wayne)
YOLO!!!! I have to say after first time hearing this track, Drake enters immediately on the track, full of life and energy, and the chorus is an anthem which everyone who hears it has to rap along. Lil Wayne also adds zest with his distinct voice and flow of rhyming. One of my favourite songs on this album!
20. Hate Sleeping Alone (Bonus Track)
- A very delightful song based on sex....maybe not for everyone, I can see why it is a bonus track!
One thing I would comment about this album is that after 20 songs Drake's voice can sound a bit monotonous! He is an amazing artist with versatility, combining singing and rapping but for around an hour it can be strenuous so I never usually sit and listen to his album start-finish but skip through my favourite songs and intertwine other artists shuffled in between on my ipod. The album does contain some profanity, not in a crude way, but derogative terms are thrown in everywhere and anywhere, probably just to give it that rough "hip hop" and "gangsta" edge....
All in all, I am happy I bought this album! I have got my tickets to see him in concert in March and by complete chance Drake can now count myself as one of his new biggest fans. I won't over hype him as not all his stuff is amazing, but he's commercial, accessible, catchy and easy on the eye! I would recommend his album to anyone who likes some rap with an R & B vibe!
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Over My Dead Body
2 Shot For Me
4 Crew Love (feat The Weeknd)
5 Take Care (feat Rihanna)
6 Marvins Room / Buried Alive Interlude
7 Under Ground Kings
8 We'll Be Fine (feat Birdman)
9 Make Me Proud (feat Nicki Minaj)
10 Lord Knows (feat Rick Ross)
11 Cameras / Good Ones Go Interlude
12 Doing It Wrong
13 The Real Her (feat Lil' Wayne & Andre 3000)
14 Look What You've Done
15 HYFR (Hell Ya Fucking Right) (feat Lil. Wayne)
17 The Ride