Yesterday, Drake made the internet collectively “get over here” with the news his upcoming album, Scorpion. Evoking images Spider-Man antagonists, Mortal Kombat legends, and Ryan Gosling in one fell swoop, Drizzy’s latest came accompanied with a June release date. While conspiracy theorists circled back to Drake’s closing lines on “Do Not Disturb,” swearing that “summary” meant “summer-y” all along, many wondered whether or not Drake would be fering a “return-to-form” sorts. After all, Views and More Life were well-received, but failed to reach the lty pinnacles Drake’s prime drops.
Admittedly, Drake has played this one close to the chest. The game’s self-pressed hopeless romantic has spent many a melancholic evening in the studio, no doubt agonizing over every detail with meticulous precision. The rapper has previously set a somewhat masochistic tone to the making- process, citing sleepless nights in the name artistry; the things we do for love. Gone are the days Silver City Indigo and the infamous “Jimmy.” Drake has evolved into something like an entity, which has translated into his most grandiose singles thus far.
Yet there’s something to be said about the name. Compared to some more reflective album titles, it seems almost boyish by comparison. I mean, Drake is literally donning a leather jacket adorned with “Scorpion,” like a villain in an eighties coming--age film. And yet, it somehow works; equal parts self-deprecating and fashionable, equal parts deadly and personal (let’s be honest, we all know Drake is down with the astrology). Yet these are merely inferences. What do we actually know about Drake’s upcoming album?
As his career progressed, Drake seemed increasingly eager to embrace his Canadian roots. While he previously seemed more likely to shoutout “HoustAtlantaVegas,” Views found Drake wearing his city on his sleeve, stepping into his role as an unficial ambassador. Now, the rapper is almost synonymous with the 6; not only is he the media face the Toronto Raptors, but his OVO label is made up an entirely Toronto-based roster.
If you thought Views was going to be the quintessential T.Dot album, there’s a strong chance that Drizzy has outdone himself. During a Toronto Raptors game, Drizzy addressed the crowd with a passionate speech. "I love each and every one you. I'm happy to be home. I'm working on this new album for the city." Yes. I know what you’re thinking. It’s vague. Still, Drake has evolved so much since Views, and his importance to Toronto has never been stronger. To this date, he’s the only rapper in history to have ever referenced Tie Domi.
Therefore, we can expect Scorpion will be a love letter to Toronto, either lyrically, sonically or both. Perhaps a heavy OVO presence is suggested. Either way, the Six God will live up to his moniker.
The More Life playlist was released on March 18th, 2017, after being pushed back from an original December 2016 release date. After a brief respite, it didn’t take long for Drizzy to return to the studio; IG posts confirm his grind restarted as far back as September 10th, 2017. From that point onward, Drake’s IG was littered with various studio updates, and in November, the rapper addressed New Zealand fans with the promise imminent new music. In January 2017, Drake was back in the studio once again, days removed from the release his Scary HoursEP.
Suffice it to say, it would appear that Drake’s Scorpion sessions transpired from approximately September 2017 until, at the very least, January 2018. Knowing Drake, he may very well be on the grind until the week before Scorpion drops. Either way, we're looking at a sizable window; perhaps not as intense J. Cole's alleged "two weeks" turn around time, but it's nice to see Drake taking his time to perfect the project.
We all know Drizzy's opening chapters play a pivotal role in setting the album's tone. Generally, the rapper tends to favor a more introspective approach, with songs like "Fireworks," "Over My Dead Body," and "Tuscan Leather" giving him ample room to assess his current position. On More Life, however, Drake opted to kick things f with a bang, trading in some that substance for a quickening the pulse. This time around, it would appear that Drake is picking up where his playlist left f, opting to trade in the introspective hat for something to match the Scorpion jacket.
As he tends to do, Drake previously threw up an IG post showing f his new zip-up look, which received a comment from SteezeTheGreat. "Zip Up is hard," wrote Steeze, prompting a reply from the Six God. "Harder than the album intro or nah?" At least we know one thing - the opening track may or may not be harder than a zip-up sweater. Granted, that's somewhat a low bar, depending on who you ask. Still, it's interesting that Drake chose to single out the project's introductory cut. That's how you know it's special.
Keep The Family Close
An artist Drake's stature undoubtedly has a wide array producers and artists clamoring to work with him. And while he's ten packed his projects with a diversified roster supporting players, there has been one consistent through-line from the jump. OVO co-founder Noah "40" Shebib has been there through it all, and Instagram photos have confirmed his presence on Drake's upcoming drop. Granted, that's far from a surprise, as 40 has been Drake's right hand throughout the entirety the voyage.
Likewise for Boi-1da, who contributed drums to "God's Plan." It wouldn't be surprising to see his name pop up on Scorpion, as the producer confirmed he had continued to work with Drake even after "God's Plan." Murda Beatz also found his prile increasing, joining Drizzy's inner circle and blessing the new single "Nice For What" with a soulful, Lauryn Hill sampling instrumental. Who knows? The Ontario producer may very well find himself contributing more than one drop to Drake's Scorpion.
It was previously reported that Pi'erre Bourne would be contributing to Scorpion. In November 2017, he stated he was "working on Drake's album," a fact Drake later confirmed during Pi'erre's Instagram Live stream. Drizzy chimed into the session, writing "Me and Pierre already got one." Only time will tell.
On Sunday, April 15th Drake used a well-played meme to suggest contributions from Vinylz & T-Minus, writing "When @Vinylz and @tminusmusic send a beat pack through..." It wouldn't be surprising to see them pop up on Scorpion, especially given the fact that T-Minus shared the album announcement on his own IG.