Drake’s songs will be unavoidable come summer, as the soundtrack for sports highlights, inspiring some to grind a little harder, helping others to mend a broken heart. But it’s hard to stay in the world of “Views” for too long. My field of vision kept shrinking until I felt that I was looking at a narrow band of light. There’s something universal about Drake’s inwardness, certainly, but it begins to feel tedious to linger too long in the self-conflict zone when so much other music aspires to take in the world all at once. He continues to make music that sounds magnificent but leaves you feeling a bit unfulfilled. I imagine that this is what it would feel like to be the antagonist in one of Drake’s songs, one of the featureless exes whose only purpose is to support him, to hold a mirror up to him, stuck in a relationship where sweet nothings are tossed off for the sake of a clever phrasing, where you are little more than furniture in someone else’s movie.
Hua Hsu, “The Self-Conflict Zone”, The New Yorker (16 May 2016), 97.