Seven Days shows heavy Drake influence

Rap has never stayed stagnant, and that fact itself makes it a genre worth exploring. From old-school ’90s tapes, to mainstream stadium sound, to the more underground era of SoundCloud rappers, the rap game is constantly evolving, with something for everyone. Seven Days, by Canadian artist PARTYNEXTDOOR, is a great look into the more chill, underground scene though the lens of an up-and-coming superstar. PND, whose legal name is Jahron Anthony Brathwaite, is an artist most commonly associated with cultural icon Drake. Being a frequent collaborator and the first artist signed to Drake’s OVO Sound label has let PND enjoy his own brand of success while becoming inspired by Drake’s own style. Seven Days is the result of PND’s creative juices flowing over the course of half an hour, and the result is absolutely worth a listen.

Every song on the EP is similar, yet incredibly unique in its own right. Consisting of seven songs and two guest features, it flies by rather quickly, but manages to create a lasting impression. For example, take the first song, “Bad Intentions.” The most striking thing about it is the irregular drum beat. Not in sync with anything other than itself, it draws the focus of the listener to each clashing note and provides relief when notes match up to it, perhaps by chance. The lyrics themselves are very much inspired by slower Drake songs: it feels like a reworked “From Time” from Drake’s hit album Nothing Was the Same. PND is talking about how his girl isn’t just a one-time deal, but how she’s worth all seven days of his week, similarly to how Drake talks about how his current girl might be the one for him. Both, however, end up brooding about how they might be bad influences on the women of their lives.

Another certified banger on Seven Days is “Damage,” featuring Halsey. The least Drake-like track on this EP trades its similarity to the rest of the tracklist for addictive beats and pop-inspired vocals. A smooth synth is complemented with loud, muted drums, with Halsey and PND singing at the same time about someone who’s always on their mind. This is, in my opinion, the most mainstream song on the EP; it replicates successful elements from pop while adding its own twist. Similar to “All Night” from Chance the Rapper’s Coloring Book, the song is a welcome distraction from the overall chill vibe of the rest of Seven Days. Drake’s influence is hard to ignore, however, as the break down and additional drum beat toward the ends remind me of “Too Good” off of Views.

Continuing through the EP, the song “Best Friends” pops out as PND’s take on modern trap music. With ad libs, lower key vocals, and muted drums, the song is something you would want to play in your car while driving at night with the windows down and the bass up. The haunting synth notes throughout the song provide audio peaks that serve as relief from the pure bass that is the drum track. In terms of Drake similarity, I’d venture to say this is more like Drake and Future’s joint album, What A Time To Be Alive, due to the trap-like vocals and similar drum beats. Specifically, the song “Big Rings” is very close to “Best Friends”—both have similar vocals, similar bass lines, and similar synth notes. Yet, I vastly prefer PND’s song, as it is less harsh and more casual than the aggressive Drake track.

In conclusion, Seven Days is an EP of songs influenced by Drake’s ideas, with PND’s own unique style added. That’s not saying it’s a bad album; on the contrary, I enjoyed most, if not all, of it. I can’t wait to see what he has in store for the lyrical world next.