Wanna Know something you definitely already know? Meek Mill responded to Drake late last night, adding yet another layer to their high-profile "beef" with a diss record of his own. Finally! The response we've all been waiting for! The song that has caused the rap internet to languish for day, wondering whether Meek was going to actually pen a response to the 6 God, has arrived! And...this is it?
The response was a yawn to the highest degree. After all the boasting, all of the shots, all of the conversation, we were served up a cold plate of throwaway with a side of tired, played out insults. That sound you hear? That's the sound of shots that missed their mark falling softly into the grass as gently as an OVO owl landing. The people have spoken, and Drake has the clear advantage right now.
It's been over a week now since Meek first launched his diatribe against Drake via Twitter, calling him out for allegedly using a ghostwriter. Since then we've heard Drake respond twice via wax. "Charged Up" was the appetizer, the calm before the storm, while his "Back To Back Freestyle" was not only a high-energy diss but also your standard Drake banger that will get play in the club for the remainder of the summer. All eyes were on Meek, with the people wondering when he was going to respond, and why it was taking him so long. As the days stretched on it seemed like Meek might not respond at all. But I always thought the idea Meek was now ducking Drizzy was foolish. Of course Meek was going to respond. He's a former battle rapper and the reason this entire situation started. How could he not? There was no way he was just going to walk away.
I'll admit, everything seemed promising when I first saw "Wanna Know" had gone public. The artwork was funny, despite the considerably lackluster Photoshop job, and featured Drake as one of music's most famous frauds, Milli Vanilli, along with the notorious OVO owl turned to a ghost (a nod to Drake's ghostwriting). The Undertaker's entrance music was sampled, setting the stage for a lyrical ass-whooping in the most ominous way possible. Quentin Miller's reference track for "Know Yourself" was also sampled, which was perhaps the most damning portion of Meek's response.
The track certainly has its moments, but ultimately "Wanna Know" feels sloppy. Sure, the rhymes are there, if you could clearly make them out, but for the most part it sounded like your average Meek verse. The record is broken up by dialogue, which mostly just serves to take the energy out of the listener, and by the time the beat switches up it almost feels like a different song. By the time the last line is uttered, "This that Ja Rule shit and 50 Cent," you're left wondering who is 50 and who is Ja, with Meek leaning towards the latter. Drake's Instagram, posted after "Wanna Know" was released, says it all.
As a fan of both artists I would have liked to hear something stronger from Meek, though with all of the slander that Drake has received through the years I'm not sure how that could have been achieved. It's hard to effectively ether someone when the punchlines have been used a thousand times before. It's been a wildly entertaining bout so far, but in the wake of Drake's efforts "Wanna Know" just doesn't seem to live up to the hype. Perhaps it was heading that way regardless; many of the people I spoke with already had their hearts set on Drake being so far ahead that the inevitable Meek response was going to be a letdown almost no matter what it sounded like. As I mentioned, "Back To Back" will continue to receive play and I wouldn't be surprised if it ends up charting on the Billboard 100. "Wanna Know," on the other hand, is a poorly constructed record that doesn't exactly call for replay. If Meek had responded immediately to "Charged Up" with "Wanna Know" it might have had a stronger impact, but after days of waiting, with "Back to Back" being played out of cars nationwide, calling Drake a "buttercup" and a "fucking dork" just isn't going to cut it.
The most damning aspect for Drake though isn't Meek's response, but the surfacing of numerous other Quentin Miller reference tracks. A piece of "Know Yourself" was used in "Wanna Know," while Quentin's "Used To" and "R.I.C.O." also found their way to the 'net. Regardless of Meek's record, these reference tracks are sure to leave a bitter taste in the mouths of fans concerned with Drake's authenticity as a rapper. Fortunately for Drake though, it seems that Meek's lackluster diss record might be overshadowing these latest developments, and is further proof that the vast, vast majority of listeners just don't care about ghostwriting allegations as long as they have good new music to bump.
As it stands now, how is Drake not the victor? You would think he's a seasoned beef veteran the way he's perfectly navigated throughout this situation, picking up nothing but wins along the way. By comparison, Meek has taken an "L" at every turn, from responding on social media instead of a song to taking too long to send out a proper response to saying
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. Is the "beef" over now? Well, Drake could prop his feet up, sit back and wait at this point. He's got the 'net championing him, responding again would only give "Wanna Know" a level of attention its not getting on its own.
Meanwhile, Meek has managed to take the conversation from "
" after the success of his album to "is Meek Mill's career finished?" in the span of a month. What could Meek do to help his standing right now? Putting out another song, no matter how amazing it is, would only look weak, like he was admitting "Wanna Know" wasn't very good and he was trying to make up for it.
The public just doesn't seem to care as much about the ghostwriting allegations for whatever reason, the news was stale by the time Meek got around to rapping about it, and even considering the weird peeing thing, Meek's just not covering new ground. It may have been more successful to simply play the "I'm fucking your dream chick" card. That's when memes happen, and Meek is on the wrong side of the meme-sphere
As a fan, I'm torn between hoping this "beef" ends now and kind of wishing it extends further. This story is dominating the summer right now, and every new twist has been nothing but entertaining. As always
, Toronto city councilor gave us his opinion on the matter, further cementing him in "charged up" Twitter god status. Maybe Meek should have had Norm writing his rhymes?
[By Brendan Varan. He's so charged up right now it's not funny. Follow him on Twitter.]