I’m the type of person who takes mainstream hip hop and R&B in doses–very infrequent and small doses. Often, though not all the time, there’s something about it that just rubs me the wrong way. Sometimes it’s the ego (looking at you Yeezus) that bothers me, sometimes it’s the beats underneath. When the legitimate musicality of a track is boring and the lyrics are sexist, the whole thing droops. Simply stated, I could care less about the likes of Kanye and Jay-Z. Shocking coming from this indie pop loving person, right?
Well, here’s another shocking fact for you: I can’t stop listening to darling of the mainstream, Drake’s new mixtape, If You Are Reading This It’s Too Late. I don’t know what’s happened. Someone come help me find the real Sararosa because apparently she’s not here. She’s off listening to Vampire Weekend or Doomtree, while meanwhile I sit here writing this, bobbing my head to music I usually silently judge people for listening to.
I couldn’t even tell you when I started liking the mixtape either. My cousin made me listen to it while we were spending a weekend out of town together and I kept hitting repeat. There’s something really melancholic and solar system-like about the tracks and it’s been fitting my mood these days. “Know Yourself” changes from a minor to major key in the middle of the song and it stuns you. It’s so disorienting and addicting, like sugar in the form of a song. Meanwhile, “10 Bands” is the perfect song to pump you up for Monday in its forward momentum. The mixtape as a whole glides from song to song. The first time I listened to it from top to bottom, I felt it melt into me and caramelize in my ears. It’s very transcendental and in a world where mainstream hip hop can be abrasive, it’s nice for my ears to be surprised by something that is not.
So go ahead, you indie pop lovers! Take a chance like I did and give Drake’s mixtape a try. Ignore the swearing if you can and just tune out to it. It’s actually great. Now, if you excuse me, I have to go find the real Sararosa. It’s not like her to be missing like this.