What A Time To Be Alive: The Review
What A Time to Be Alive will go down as one of the most noteworthy projects of 2015, as the two hottest names in hip hop this minute, Drake and Future, blessed Twitter timelines and Apple Music subscribers with their collab on Sunday, Sept. 20.
After days of teasing and fake album covers, WATTBA sold over 330,000 copies in its first week. It’s almost a peak for the Freebandz/October’s Very Own—Future and Drake’s respective labels—hype train, but not exactly for their material.
Drake and Future have captivated their audiences with their musical stylings. “Where Ya At,” a Future and Drake collaboration off of Future’s Dirty Sprite 2 album, may stand out as one of the best hip hop tracks of 2015. Naturally, both rappers have put together an album that will guarantee to get fans to wild out, bang heads and enjoy the “bangers” put forth.
But what’s unfortunate about this project is the lack of togetherness and synergy. In fact, some fans have gone so far as to say it’s Future’s mixtape, and Drake is rapping over it. I haven’t found anyone or anything who believes vice-versa. You can even find a Future only version of WATTBA if you look hard enough.
The project feels as if the rappers verses were kind of slapped together on tracks, and if there is any sort of crossover between the two in terms of vocals, it feels as if it was done out of necessity and not naturally.
“Diamonds Dancing” is the album’s best track by a mile, and it’s probably the closest you can get to a track that rivals “Where Ya At”. A catchy bridge and hook will get people “balling in the middle of the club, no jersey” every time. Diamonds Dancing is the track on the album that has executed that formula to perfection.
Despite the lack of cohesion, full marks must be given to Metro Boomin, the popular producer whose name and handiwork is all over the album (literally—Young Thug keeps moaning his name before almost every track; a watermark). Come for the appeal of a Future and Drake collaboration, stay for the addictive and stellar production.
While this project can still appease one’s appetite for bangers, it’s clearly not the duo’s best work of 2015. But Drake and Future can be forgiven for this project, however. Future’s been on a roll all year and the project won’t be a speed bump on his dominance.
As for Drake, the album is seen as a palate cleanser, before he jumps into his much-anticipated project, Views From the 6, which has the makings of an effort that will go away from the “bangers” that can be found all over WATTBA and his surprise mixtape, If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late.
If you’re a fan of the hype that Drake and Future have started, you’ll enjoy WATTBA, especially if you aren’t trying to make it bigger than it is; a stepping stone to bigger things.