The wait continues for Drake’s sixth studio album, “Certified Lover Boy”. After nearly three weeks of radio silence from the Toronto rapper, many began to lose faith that the album was still coming in January. On January 20th, he took to his Instagram to announce that the album would not be releasing when originally announced.

Delay Delay Delay

This isn’t the first project Drake has delayed. After the release of his mixtape, “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late”, he immediately began working on his fourth studio album. It was titled “Views From The 6”, and it was supposed to release in the latter half of 2015. After the success of his mixtape, he opted to release a collaboration with Future titled “What A Time To Be Alive”. When “Views From The 6” was finally released in the following April, the title was shortened to “Views”. In 2016, he delayed his self-proclaimed playlist titled “More Life”. It had been announced for a December release, but he delayed it until March of the following year. With Drake not mentioning anything about “Certified Lover Boy” in the month it was coming out, a delay was inevitable.

What We Know About Certified Lover Boy

There is not much that fans know about “Certified Lover Boy”. The album’s lead single ‘Laugh Now Kry Later’ was released in August, but like Drake’s previous albums, the single is usually never indicative of how the album will sound. There have been numerous leaks during this era of his career. It is unclear whether any of them will appear on an album. A song titled ‘Not Around’ suddenly appeared on the web in early April. The song caused Twitter to go into a frenzy. The leak was so phenomenal that Drake said he is keeping it on the album. Another song titled ‘Sound 42’ is rumored to be on the album as well.

Historically, Drake doesn’t release leaks unless they are substantially different from what listeners heard. For example, the song ‘U With Me’ on “Views” featured the leaked song ‘Views from the 6’, but with different lyrics. His hit song ‘Controlla’ leaked early. However, when the album was released, Popcaan’s verse was cut and replaced with another Drake verse. Some leaks create an unrealistic expectation from fans. He either keeps it the same, and people are mad it’s the same song fans have heard for months. If you change it and ruin a song people loved. This is a challenge Drake has had to deal with countless times when releasing an album.

Why is Certified Lover Boy Important?

“Certified Lover Boy” is one of the most anticipated albums of the year (It even made CELEB’s list). No matter the leaks, the delays, or other road bumps we may experience during the wait for it, the album will sell. Like all of Drake’s albums, it will break records, it will dominate the charts, and we’ll probably all get tired of hearing it everywhere. But there is one thing different this time around for Drake. This has been the longest fans have gone without a proper Drake album in a long time. He did release “Dark Lane Demo Tapes” last year, it was a collection of leaks that were cut from an album. It was not a cohesive body of work like his albums tend to be. Drake usually releases albums every other year, so we are long overdue for a new album.

While Drake is one of the biggest artists on Earth, he is not immune to controversy. The last few album cycles have been tainted by ghostwriting rumors and absent father allegations. The fact of the matter is, Drake is Teflon. Nothing sticks to him in the public eye. Yet within certain hip-hop circles, the question of his pen and his undeniable loss in his latest rap beef has left him wounded. He has something to prove. With both Views and Scorpion receiving lukewarm responses, Drake seems to be aiming to make a memorable album. If any of the leaks are an indication, we just might get one.

Why Certified Lover Boy is Different

After the release of “If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late”, Drake was bigger than he had ever been. Fresh off an Apple Music deal, he was poised to be untouchable. However, when rumors began to swirl that he didn’t write his music, he had to perform a course correction. Both “Views and “More Life” suffered from a certain level of passive-aggressiveness that fans were not accustomed to within Drake’s music. Every song featured subliminal attacks towards the opposition. It got so bad that even his mother noticed it.

By the time “Scorpion” was released, Drake had come to terms with his tarnished legacy and knew there will always be some who question his authenticity. That brings us to his next major beef. Just before the release of “Scorpion”, he was accused of being a deadbeat dad that was hiding the existence of a child. This caused him to change the course of the album in a matter of weeks. Once the album was released, it felt more like a hasty response to the allegations instead of a cohesive body of work carefully curated over time.

Both instances are detrimental to the quality Drake tries to bring to his albums. These projects don’t feel like they are for the fans or even for himself, but more an attempt at damage control. “Certified Lover Boy” is different. Drake is currently not in any active rap beef that could turn his focus away from making a quality album. This album will be the first one in years that is not fueled by aggression towards one of his peers.

The Wait Continues

No one knows when “Certified Lover Boy” will be released. It was supposed to be a summer album, but then the Summer came and went. Then it was supposed to release in January, now we learn that isn’t happening. Drake has left fans completely in the dark this time. There have been no sneak peeks of songs on social media like there have been in the past, no one is sure if any of the leaked songs will make an appearance, and all fans can hold on to is that it is coming sometime in 2021. And we’ll be waiting.

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