After months of rumors and delays, one official false alarm, a strange ESPN teaser, and release-date battle with Kanye West’s “Donda” that never happened, Drake has confirmed in unambiguous terms that his long-awaited sixth full-length album “Certified Lover Boy” will finally be out on Friday.
The post includes what may be the album’s cover: little cartoons of pregnant women (take it away, Internet!)…
“Certified Lover Boy September 3,” he posted on Instagram Monday morning (August 30), so if it doesn’t arrive he’ll be two-thirds of the way to tying West’s non-release battle; first announced last August with the Lil Durk tag-team “Laugh Now Cry Later,” Drake posted in October that the album would be out in January but later changed course, citing recovering from an unspecified surgery.
While the purported release-date battle with West started off with industry whispers and a social media post from West’s longtime collaborator Consequence, it gained steam when the two rappers revived their long-running rivalry over social media. Earlier this month, a new Drake verse was added to “Betrayal,” a song on Trippie Redd’s new album “Trip at Knight.”
“All these fools I’m beefin’ that I barely know/ Forty-five, forty-four (Burned out), let it go/ Ye ain’t changin’ shit for me, it’s set in stone,” Drake raps, although there was some question as to whether or not he actually said “Ye.” However, both West and Consequence are 44 years old.
Then West posted and deleted Drake’s home address (not that it’s hard to find), which was followed by Drake posting a short video of himself laughing.
However, after a controversial third public listening session for “Donda,” West finally dropped the album on Sunday morning. In all likelihood, he would have lost a streaming battle with Drake anyway, if only because the ever-changing “Donda” had been publicly aired and livestreamed over Apple Music three times, while “Certified Lover Boy” has been comparatively shrouded in mystery. (There are other reasons Drake would have won as well, but they would take too long to list…)
The fact that Drake waited to announce his release date until “Donda” was out suggests that the two at least tacitly agreed not to go head-to-head, but West’s got all week to find ways to upstage, troll or photobomb his rival’s big moment.
Although the album is the official successor to 2018’s “Scorpion,” Drake has released multiple new songs in between, including last year’s “Dark Lane Demo Tapes.”