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The Foreword

Drake’s Scary Hours 3: Exactly What We Needed

Getty Images | Ron Turenne

Drake is probably the most influential individual in the entire music industry, maybe besides the one who shall not be named (Taylor Swift, of course). He has a grip on the hip-hop, R&B, and pop genres that seem hard for any other artist to match. However, in early October he dropped his long-awaited For All the Dogs record to mostly disappointed reviews. The album was, without a doubt good, but fell short of the expectation that it was ‘the old Drake’ coming back in full form. The record had many songs that became extremely popular such as “First Person Shooter,” What Would Pluto Do,” and “8am in Charlotte,” but after listening all the way through, a bad taste was left in my mouth (or ears, I should say). Drake still knew how to make hits, but it seemed as if the album dragged out for too long and that he wasn’t performing his best when it came to most of the songs.

This leads us to Scary Hours 3

When I got a text from a friend during gym class that Drake was dropping that night (Nov 17th). I was expecting it to fall short of expectations, just as For All the Dogs had a month before. It didn’t help its case that he revealed he had written all six songs within only five days. If his last project took over a year, how quality could this one be? Nevertheless, I stayed up until midnight that night on a call with my friend, excited for the drop but thinking nothing of it.

What Drake ended up dropping was a huge surprise. It was not exactly a whole new record, but an extension of For All the Dogs with six new songs added at the end. While most, myself included, were expecting more of the same autotune-heavy, weird mix between R&B and rap that we got in his last project, Drake heavily subverted those expectations by doing exactly what he does best: long, introspective rapping over soft, sophisticated beats.

Cover of “FOR ALL THE DOGS: Scary Hours Edition” (@champagnepapi on Instagram)

Songs like “The Shoe Fits” and “Stories My Brother Told” harken back to Drake’s old style of rap while telling his classic tales of broken relationships and the struggles of success. “Evil Ways” with J. Cole is another pure introspective rapping track that thrives on the success of “First Person Shooter” and features one of the best lyricists in all of rap. Finally, he ends the short collection of songs with “You Broke My Heart,” an upbeat finish about a failed relationship and how he’s been even more successful after its end.

While I thoroughly enjoyed the project and still listen to the songs weeks after its release, critics had mixed reviews. Aron A of HotNewHipHop praises the lyricism of the album saying “Scary Hours 3 showcases Drake’s lyrical dexterity in a way that’s been sorely lacking from his catalog the past few year.” He however ends his review by claiming: “[Scary Hours 3] fulfills its purpose yet fails to execute to the standard Drake has set for himself.” Roisin O’Conner of The Independent opinions that Drake “shakes off some of the toxic sludge he’s been wading through of late,” with “Drake delivering some of his best bars in years over sumptuous, woozy beats.”

Even with mixed reviews, Drake’s Scary Hours 3 surprised us with the style of music. He finally fulfilled the promise of returning to the old Drake and it’s more refreshing than any hip-hop fan could imagine.

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About the Contributor
Sam Stavchansky
Sam Stavchansky, Staff Writer
Sam Stavchansky is a sophomore at Pittsburgh Allderdice High School. He comes from Austin, Texas, and has lived in Pittsburgh for a year. He runs for the Allderdice Cross Country and Track teams and plays basketball outside of school. He enjoys playing video games, reading, and playing chess in his free time.

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