Drake’s “Certified Lover Boy” does not deliver

(Richard Shotwell/Invision, via Associated Press)

By Chris Kariuki | Guest Contributor

“Certified Lover Boy:” A confusing, yet somehow accurate way to title the established Canadian rapper Drake’s latest album. While there was a cloud of controversy surrounding this album, be it the quality of music provided or his latest beef with Kanye West, if there’s anything that is certain in this lifetime, it’s death, taxes and Drake getting another No. 1 charting album.

“Certified Lover Boy,” like any other album, has its ups and downs. While Drake catches a lot of heat for being the poster child of all sellouts and consistently limiting his true artistic talent because he would rather make a song that will trend on TikTok and put money in his pockets, he isn’t as popular as he is for no reason.

Songs like “Champagne Poetry” remind fans of Drake’s lyricism from the earlier days of his career, and tracks such as “TSU” show his versatility and how in tune he is with different styles of hip-hop. However, many fans accuse the Toronto native as being lazy and believe that he is not worthy of his self-proclaimed title as the “king of hip-hop.”

In the upcoming weeks of the album’s release, Drake was noted to take many jabs at Kanye West, who many believe is one of the people— if not the only person — who can match Drake in both popularity and quality of art.

Many hip-hop fans see West as the “ars gratia artis” type while Drake is only around to collect as much money as he can. Drake has been accused of using ghostwriters in the past, and has even been noted to be cruel to those who work for him. Virginia Beach rapper Pusha T mentioned Drake in a 2018 diss track, saying that he forces his producers to work while sick to the point of possible mortality.

Whether you’re a fan of Drake or not, it is impossible to deny his skill and contributions to hip-hop. There are plenty of times where Drake makes a song like “Toosie Slide” and we just wish he could hop in the studio and make another “Paris Morton Music II,” and for a larger part of it, “Certified Lover Boy” seems like another example of fans wishing we got an artist who cared more about the craft than what it brings them.

Overall, I and many others feel the same way about the album that we have all been feeling about Drake for over half a decade now: it’s good, but we know he can do better.

Looking for a different perspective on “CLB”? Check out this article.