Thank Me Later

BY Ryan B. PatrickPublished Jun 15, 2010

"My 15 minutes started an hour ago," Drake opines on "Fireworks," the lead track from arguably the most eagerly awaited rap record of 2010. Thank Me Later is the culmination of the unprecedented rise of one Aubrey Drake Graham. In a relatively short time frame, the Degrassi alumni has climbed to the top of the post-millennium rap game, coolly shrugging off the "He's from Canada" millstone that has grounded many an aspiring Canuck MC. But consider Thank Me Later a loss leader of sorts, a pop rap odyssey that's deeply autobiographical and primed for mainstream consumption. So, for hardcore heads that can't make heads or tails of the poppy "Find Your Love" and pan the various Auto-tuned hooks and middle-class musings, it doesn't matter. Joints like "Show Me a Good Time" and "Miss Me" (featuring Lil Wayne) somewhat counterbalance the introspection with casual braggadocio. Even the much-vaulted collaboration with Jay-Z ("Light Up") is surprisingly subdued, with a tentative Hov sizing up his much younger (and hungrier) counterpart. Thank Me Later gets a pass for being as daring as it is calculated. Whether or not Thank Me Later goes platinum seems immaterial; Drake has already proven that he can drive revenue off touring. The title track is the best indicator of where Drake (and perhaps post-Thank Me Later hip-hop) is going with all this. "Fuck that old shit, we on new things"; Drake riffs on his new world standing with a title that's likely more fact than foreshadowing.

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