Let's cut to the chase here: There will not be any drill on Certified Lover Boy.
Well, we aren't sure, to be honest. But let's take a look at Drake's recent releases to predict his trajectory. For the past six years, Drake has been all over the place with the genres represented in his music. Beginning in 2016, Drake has collaborated with UK rap, drill, dancehall, and reggaeton artists. His work across genres has only gotten stronger as time passes, even making appearances in his most recent album, Dark Lane Demo Tapes. But recently, Drake has taken a step back from other genres, centering himself in rap music through collaborations with Lil Wayne and Yung Bleu. But if there is no drill on Certified Lover Boy (CLB), what can we expect from Drizzy?
Drake is going back to his rap roots on Certified Lover Boy.
Drake has become an international sensation, but he can't escape one criticism from his loyal fans: We miss the old Drake. Answering to that sentiment in 2019, Drake released Care Package a compilation album filled with songs that went underappreciated when they were released such as "Jodeci Freestyle (feat. J. Cole.)" Even with the success of Care Package, Drake fans weren't satisfied. Diehard fans had already heard and appreciated everything that Care Package featured, back when the tracks were released in the 2010-2016 time frame.
Drake followed up with Dark Lane Demo Tapes, an album filled with Brooklyn and U.K. drill collaborations and a poorly-received attempt at his own drill bars, "War." The album also featured more R&B, and light-hearted tracks like "Toosie Slide," but fans still noted that it couldn't hold a flame to Take Care or So Far Gone. So, what does Drake do next? Well, he did what any good business man would do: hop on a freestyle with his mentor, Lil Wayne. Just the start, "B.B. King Freestyle" laid the groundwork for Scary Hours 2, the precursor to CLB. Scary Hours 2 drops several hints as to what is to come. Drake fans, old and new, get excited.
Drake will keep his friends close on Certified Lover Boy. Scary Hours 2 continued this back-to-rap trend, especially through features. Drake reunites himself with past collaborators, Lil Baby and Rick Ross, instead of elevating new, smaller artists like he has in the past, Sampha, Giveon, Blocboy JB, etc. This fully immerses himself and listeners in his renowned work. After hearing "Lemon Pepper Freestyle," fans will go back and relisten to "Aston Martin Music." From there, they'll fall in love with Drake all over again.
Drake is going to keep freestyling.
First came "Chicago Freestyle" featuring Giveon, then came "B.B. King Freestyle," with Lil Wayne and most recently, Drake released "Lemon Pepper Freestyle" with Rick Ross on Scary Hours 2. Whether or not we consider "Chicago Freestyle" to be a real freestyle is besides the point. Drake's freestyle flow is going to come back again and again as the main attempt at refocusing his music in the rap genre.
Drake will keep referencing old tracks, even unreleased ones.
In Scary Hours 2 alone, there were four references to his past work. With shoutouts to "The Motto" and "Started From The Bottom," Drake further signals his appreciation of his old music and his current attempt to recreate that vibe. He extends this appreciation by acknowledging fans appreciation of his music, release or unreleased. In "What's Next," Drake repurposed his leaked track, "What A Time To Be A Slime (feat. Young Thug.)" The unreleased track fully leaked in December, 2020. Choosing to exclude it from the EP, Drake keeps his favorite part, the hook, and turn it into a new, future-focused song, performed without Young Thug.
In another unreleased track, "Lucky Lefty," Drake interpolates his 2011 track, "Fancy (feat. Swizz Beatz)" continuing this trend. It is unknown, however, whether or not "Lucky Lefty" will make it onto CLB.
Drake has been teasing CLB for a long time. With his history of genre-hopping, fans have had no clue what to expect until but Scary Hours 2 was released. Certain moves are reiterated throughout the EP, hinting at what might make the cut in CLB. Listen closely, and you'll be writing CLB's track list in no time.
Are you excited to see what Drake's got in store for fans? What's your favorite part of Scary Hours 2? Let us know in the comments.