Drake Glasgow show - O2 Academy, Glasgow, Tue 4 Jan
Show with live band and dry ice felt like a dry run for an arena tour
The streets have barely been swept of new year’s party mess, and already Aubrey Drake Graham is making a play for success in the UK in 2011 with this first date of a national tour. With ‘What’s My Name?’, his new track as a featured artist alongside his ex Rihanna, hitting number one the weekend after this show, it will be little surprise when the Kanye and Eminem-endorsed rapper recaptures the glory his debut album Thank Me Later enjoyed in the US and his native Canada last year.
With a sizeable live band hidden away behind all the dry ice and an impressive, nightclub-style lightshow, this felt like a dry run for an arena tour. While there’s impressive versatility in the power-rock of ‘Forever’, the smooth, spare R&B of ‘Karaoke’, the pounding dancefloor style of ‘Shut It Down’ and some gospel-infused, Kanye-style anthemics throughout ‘Miss Me’ and the mighty closer ‘Over’, he could do with less of the predictable chat about ‘money, cars, clothes and hoes’ which blighted ‘Successful’ and dragged this fairly impressive debut towards the same old, same old.