drake releases opulent, very cozy 'views' photo book

While his big balling contemporaries orchestrate HBO visual albums and Samsung ‘Anti’ chambers, Drake goes old school with a crazy cozy ‘Views’ photo book.

by Emily Manning
29 April 2016, 4:35pm

Though we're no longer sending away for vinyl LPs packaged with fold out posters visuals still play a central component in today's major album releases. Rihanna orchestrated an elaborate series of interactive Anti chambers, Beyoncé debuted a 45-minute HBO special, and Kanye bucked the trend by going a little lo-fi — announcing his features on a scribbled notepad and tapping Tumblr artist Peter de Potter for a DIY album cover. Today, Drake today unveiled a digital booklet of images accompanying Views.

It's a pretty old school move for a dude whose most viewed visual — the hazy neon "Hotline Bling" — more or less encouraged the thousands of memes it spawned. The Views photo book — by contrast — is overtly opulent, elaborately staged, and a little hilariously puzzling.

During his in-depth interview with BBC One's Zane Lowe last night, Drake spoke about Views' connections to seasons in Toronto, chiefly, the bitter Canadian winter's impact on his creative process. "The album is based around the change of the season in our city. It starts around in wintertime. Starts with 'Keep The Family Close.' Winter to summer and back to winter again. It's just to show you the two extreme moods that we have," the 6 God told Lowe. "It creates a different person. I thought it was important to make the album here during the winter."

That winter weather is well represented in these images. There's one of an OVO-branded helicopter touching down in a snowy clearing, and two women posing among frost-covered trees in white parkas. Drake himself takes his #cozyboi reputation to new levels: he watches over Toronto in a supersized shearling coat, gazes pensively out of a Rolls Royce window into the tundra, and pairs a long jacket with an Akita puppy (!!) Why? Honestly, who knows.

The whole series has the stylized aesthetic of a long-lost men's magazine shoot. In addition to the aforementioned jackets, Drake dons a pair of silk pjs and slides while sipping on some morning champagne and enjoying a nice wake-up hookah.

Whatever the reason for the book and its visual direction, we're certainly intrigued by both. After illustrating his releases with childlike handwritten graphics (If You're Reading This It's Too Late) and literal stock images (What a Time to Be Alive), it seems Drizzy is returning to Take Care's resplendently emo wave. Get ready for an extravagant "Summer Sixteen."


Text Emily Manning