Album Review: Drake — Scary Hours 2

Categories:  Music    The Arts
Friday, March 19th, 2021 at 1:36 PM
Album Review: Drake — Scary Hours 2 by Teddy Rankin

Love him or hate him, Drake is our generation’s Beatles (in terms of popularity), and he is about to release his “Sgt. Pepper’s.” The six-god’s highly anticipated album, “Certified Lover Boy,” has been delayed multiple times, most recently due to the rapper’s knee surgery. To tide us over, Drake released a surprise three-song EP on March 5, titled “Scary Hours 2” The three songs debuted in order at one, two and three on the Billboard Hot 100.

For context, the first “Scary Hours” EP included “God’s Plan,” a song which shattered both Apple Music and Spotify’s first day streaming records. The subsequent album, “Scorpion,” became the first ever to be streamed more than a billion times in its first week. And before you write off that Beatles comparison, remember that “Scorpion” had seven songs simultaneously in the Billboard Hot 100’s top 10, breaking the Fab Four’s 1964 record of five. However, Drake’s domination of 2018 pop culture wasn’t purely musical. Some of it was fueled by the revelation that he was hiding his young son from public view, which sparked beefs with Pusha T and a spiraling Kanye West.

Suffice to say, people are excited about “What’s Next” for Drake and he’s acutely aware of it, facing the speculation head on in the first track from “Scary Hours 2.” Drizzy uses his trademark blend of nonchalant lyricism and dreamy synth beats on "What’s Next” to let his fans know that he has it under control, hinting that “Certified Lover Boy” is on the way.

“They want my life exposed, they wanna know about the highs and lows / Well summer, all I did was rest, okay? / And New Year’s, all I did was stretch, okay? / And Valentine’s Day, I had sex, okay? / We’ll see what’s ‘bout to happen next / Okay? Okay? Okay?”

Meanwhile, Drake uses the next song, “Wants and Needs (feat. Lil Baby)” to showcase the incredible talent of a rising star. This is the most recent in a long line of efforts to feature younger artists and put an end to the narrative that Drake is selfish and has “mob boss” status in the music industry. He earnestly wants to see the new generation of hip-hop artists reach his same level of success and has repeatedly shared his platform to boost their exposure — something that his mentor, Lil Wayne, did for him. Drake’s first collaboration with Lil Baby, “Yes Indeed,” helped the young Atlanta rapper reach mainstream stardom with his catchphrase: “Wah wah wah, b**** I’m Lil Baby.”

“Scary Hours 2” wraps up with a lengthy retrospective, “Lemon Pepper Freestyle (feat. Rick Ross).” The two veteran rappers take a look back at their lives, with a focus on the differences between their early struggles and current fortunes. Drake recognizes how being at the top for so long has made him blind to his blessings, singing, “Damn, not too many parallels left in our lives / I mean, my crib look bigger through my son’s eyes.” He goes on to interweave images of his extravagant lifestyle with memories of his mother’s cooking, once again reminding himself that he “started from the bottom.”

It is never a good bet to bet against Drake. He has proven again and again that he has cracked the formula for making hit songs. By delaying the release of his next album and building anticipation through this EP, he is carving out another pop culture moment for himself. Expect “Certified Lover Boy” to dominate the airwaves this summer.

Teddy Rankin is the Music Editor for The Spectator. He can be reached at

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