Drake's If You're Reading This It's Too Late

February 13, 2015 4:46 PM

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Drake's If You're Reading This It's Too Late

The hints had been dropping like flies for weeks, even months. Whether springing from NBA basketball players or rap journalism godheads, it was clear that Drake had new music in the pipeline — a renewed full-force assault on the public consciousness after a relatively sleepy 2014. All of the cryptic Instagram posts, pinhole leaks, and rumors climaxed in a flurry of activity yesterday, a stream of appearances and releases that neatly framed his long-running cold war with Kanye West: An atmospheric short film called Jungle was released in the early morning featuring passages of new music, a conspicuous absence at West’s unveiling of his latest exploits in the world of fashion (and some new music of his own), an appearance at West’s Roc City Classic performance where he waltzed in like a plebiscite and mingled with writers and fans. And an hour before midnight, the cherry on top: a new collection of songs on iTunes, 17 tracks stretching over an hour in length, called If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late. You could apply the same title to every rushed review that’s going to be posted today, thrown together by some fatigued writer who’s spent their early morning hours trying to decipher every new sample and potential petty diss.

The first question this batch of new music demands has to do with its nature. At this early juncture, nobody can agree on how this release should be classified. Is this a mixtape, as most of the pre-release scuttlebutt suggested? Is this an album, something with a little more aesthetic gravitas and ...

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