Last night at midnight, Drake surprised the world with Dark Lane Demo Tapes, a 14-track mixtape featuring Chris Brown, Future, Young Thug and Playboi Carti. Champagne Papi’s Instagram post informed his audience the mixtape featured “some leaks… some joints from Soundcloud, and some new vibes.” Drake also announced his sixth studio album will be dropping this summer.
As Drake said himself, numerous sounds off of DLDT have already been released or leaked, and other songs have been previewed, or have had snippets released on Instagram Live. Nevertheless, let’s take a closer look at each song individually, along with the top lines and rhymes from every track.
1. Deep Pockets
Drake starts the mixtape off with “Deep Pockets”, a throwaway track, or a song that didn’t make the final cut of the album. In this case, the album was Scorpion, so the song was recorded during summer 2018, when Drizzy was recording his fifth studio album.
Best lines (annotations via Genius.com):
Pyramid schemes just like the Egyptians
Back when hotlines were still flippin’
Now I’m seein’ money off of hotlines blingin’ but it feels different
Transitions, plans switchin’, ambition
Mindin’ my business, buildin’ a business, et cetera
Inspired by a few, but my mind really drives itself like Tesla”
2. When To Say When
Originally released on October’s Very Own Soundcloud on March 1, “When To Say When” features one long Drake verse—2:37 to be exact—with some of the project’s best bars. The beat samples Bobby Glenn’s “Sounds Like a Love Song,” and Drake recorded a music video in New York City that dropped the same day. Jay-Z used the same Bobby Glenn sample in his song “Song Cry,” released in 2002.
“Always move right so my watch is on the other hand
She can try and play it down now, but she was a fan
People wanna know what’s in my pockets, they don’t understand
My assistant always findin’ Percocet and rubber bands
Know my mom might not want to hear how I discover plans
Word to Sandra Graham, no one love you like your mother can”
3. Chicago Freestyle (ft. Giveon)
Released the same day as “When To Say When,” “Chicago Freestyle” was part of the same music video as the previous track, as Drake switched from NYC to Drake’s mansion called “The Embassy’ in Toronto. According to Genius, including Chicago in the song title may have referenced Drizzy’s AM/PM series, which he has not contributed to since “4pm in Calabasas” in 2016.
For the pre-chorus, Drake pays tribute to Eminem’s “Superman”: “But I do know one thing though / Women they come they go / Saturday through Sunday, Monday / Monday through Sunday, yo”
The start of the first verse gets the song started on a hot note:
“Ayy, truck to the plane to the truck
Truck to the hotel lobby
Me, I go through underground garages
Presidential suite on deposit
Elevator up to the room
Shower up and then we hit the club
Touch down, gotta see what’s up”
4. Not You Too (ft. Chris Brown)
For track number four, Drake slows the vibes down on Dark Lane Demo Tapes. Featuring Chris Brown, “Not You Too” has “Redemption” vibes with a emotional lyrics and a relaxed beat. Chris Brown does not have his own verse, but instead sings along with Drake throughout the song. Teaming back up together, Drake and Chris Brown released “Not You Too” less than a year after Drake was featured on Brown’s “No Guidance”.
The last 40 seconds of the song features both the beat and Drake’s voice slowly fade out, as he asks:
“Thought I knew the real, then they flipped
How many times did I ask about this, on God?
Why you let me find out like this, on God?
Houston, we got a problem, my dawg”
5. Toosie Slide
“Toosie Slide” became Drake’s third official release of 2020 after Drizzy dropped “Desires’ and the “When To Say When” and “Chicago Freestyle” combo. The dance-provoking song went viral instantly, and just about everyone learned the Toosie Slide dance—including NFL commisioner Roger Goodell who danced along with Jerry Jeudy on the night of the NFL Draft.
You’ve seen it on Tik Tok countless times, and Drake’s ability to go viral overnight demonstrates his influence in today’s culture.
“Got so many opps, I be mistakin’ opps for other opps
Got so many people that I love out of troubled spots
Other than the family I got, it’s either you or me
That’s just how I think, it’s either you or me”
6. Desires (ft. Future)
Released on January 31 through OVO’s Soundcloud, “Desires (ft. Future)” stands as the duo’s second song of 2020, after “Life is Good” premiered on January 10. Drake and Future already teamed up for What A Time To Be Alive in September 2015, and rumors have it the two have another joint album—titled What A Time To Be Alive 2—on the way this year.
“Where I’m from, they serve the soda clean (Clean, clean)
You come from a city where there’s lean with the rocks in it
How the fuck you keep so many secrets?
How you goin’ vegan, but still beefin’ with me again?
How the fuck you’ve seen so many beaches?
Tickets to them places don’t come cheap, and
I see you back in Turks
Remember who took you there first and don’t you forget it
Got you a whip, but then you got back on your shit”
7. Time Flies
Reaching the halfway point in his mixtape, Drake slows it down on “Time Flies”. Drizzy previewed the track on April 7 via Instagram Live, and the song focuses on his feelings and his past as he arrives at a woman’s house in a Mercedes AMG.
The chorus hooks the listener in and he starts the first verse off strong:
“I just caught a shawty off a finsta
Just threw on a hoodie, it’s a Crenshaw
Way that I been livin’ unconventional
I’m just tryna make it to the end, ya know”
Coming right after a sentimental track, “Landed” switches the mood as Drake shows off his affluent lifestyle and abundance of material wealth. Drake talks about his Cartier pens, Rolex watches, “five Cadillacs,” and his new private jet—Air Drake.
It appears as though Drake has been watching The Last Dance, as he shouts out Scottie Pippen in verse three:
“Pushin’ five Cadillacs like a politician
I be in and out arenas like I’m Scottie Pippen
Yeah, pop, whippin’, wrist is goin’ thirty with it, ooh, yeah
Put the beat in front of me, I’m dirtyin’ it, yeah, what?”
9. D4L (ft. Future and Young Thug)
Drake features two of the hottest Atlanta rappers in the game on “D4L,” the ninth song off DLDT. The title pays homage to the rap group D4L, an Atlanta rap group that features Fabo, Mook-B, Stoney, and Shawty Lo. The song acts as a anthem for the three artists’ labels; Future’s FreeBandz Gang (FGB), Young Thug’s Young Stoner Life Records (YSL), and of course Drake’s October’s Very Own (OVO). According to Genius.com, the song is a remix to Dreezy and 2 Chainz’ 2018 track “2nd to None”.
“I remember grade six, I was up in Payless tryna get some Asics
Now I’m Nike’d down in a motherfuckin’ snake pit
Now I’m type of ni**a give it out and I don’t take shit”
10. Pain 1993 (ft. Playboi Carti)
In his first collaboration with Playboi Carti, Drake pays tribute to fashion figure Ian Connor and his motto “Born from Pain 1993”. Connor previously managed Playboi and Carti even named a 2015 track after him.
Drake starts the song off with his own verse shouting out former Toronto Raptors legend Kawhi Leonard:
“I just put a Wagen in the driveway, you know I did
When I shoot my shot it’s the Kawhi way, it’s goin’ in
Me and lil’ Sicko sittin’ sideways, breakin’ tens
Used to be an antisocial ni**a, now I’m makin’ friends“
In “Losses,” Drake uses clips from an Instagram Live video with his father as part of the intro, interlude and outro. The live video lasts for 15 minutes and includes the father-son duo catching up and taking shots together. For the song itself, “Losses” includes two sentimental verses as Drake keeps it real, ending both verses with the same line: “I’m not tryna make no song, these are cold facts.”
“Lost you to the game, and I see why
This is not one of them stories that got three sides
This is not one of them stories you could rewind
Like I’m tryna show the waves, this is no cap
You drove a ni**a crazy, but I drove back”
12. From Florida With Love
Originally recorded in December 2017, “From Florida With Love” features producing from MexikoDro, the first time time Drake has worked with the Atlanta producer. Early in the first verse, Drake jumps back in time to 2008, when Lil Wayne flew Drizzy out to Dallas, Texas to open for him. While Weezy was getting a tatoo, Kobe Bryant walked on the tour bus to get a copy of Carter III before the album was released to the public.
“Writin’ this from Florida with love (Love)
When I linked with Mexiko, I knew I found a plug (Dro)
Rest in peace to Static, yellin’ “Shawty want a thug,” ayy
Bottles in the club, ayy, know I love to touch (Ayy)
Weezy played that shit for me and Kobe on the bus
Went and got a chain for me, I had to give it up (Yeah)“
13. Demons (ft. Five Foreign and Sosa Geek)
The penultimate track on the mixtape, “Demons” features two New York rappers—Five Foreign and Sosa Geek. The beat has a gospel choir-type sound with a heavy bass—definitely a good workout or pump up song. The beat was produced by London producer JB Made It.
Drake continues his NBA references by talking about how he’s known to “ball in the summer like Drew League,” and shouting out the Brooklyn Nets’ new duo:
The final track off Dark Lane Demo Tapes, “War” was originally released on December 24, 2019, as a music video displayed Drake and his OVO crew on a snowy mountainside location. “War’ stood as the first time Drake worked with UK producer AXL. In classic Drake style, the Toronto-born rapper leaves his listeners with no chorus, no breaks, just two minutes and sixteen seconds of bars to remind everyone who’s been sitting on the hip-hop throne for the past decade.
“Used to look up to a man from certain ends with tune on repeat
Thought he was a bad boy, then ’til man got pinched and man went PC
Man went PC just like Dell and Windows, some man been those
Before I was ever around Kendall’s, I was at ends though, dreamin’ up Enzos”