Maybe this Drake and Joe Budden beef won’t stay one-sided after all.
In the latest installments of one of the more odd beefs in recent rap history, Drake finally released the long-awaited French Montana collab “No Shopping,” and Budden showed that he’s still ready for war.
After Joe Budden criticized Drake’s new album Views as “uninspired” in an episode of his podcast I’ll Name This Podcast Later, French Montana released an Instagram clip of a song with Drake where the 6 God is saying, “pump, pump it up,” seemingly a reference to Joe Budden’s 2003 hit song “Pump It Up.” Budden saw it as time to get ready for war, and reportedly packed his bags and went to the studio to start recording diss tracks. After he thought Drake was dropping subliminals against him on “4 p.m. In Calabasas,” Budden went for the gusto with two fiery, direct diss tracks of his own, “Making A Murderer Pt. 1” and “Wake.”
On Saturday’s edition of OVO Sound on Beats 1 Radio, listeners finally heard “No Shopping,” the full song that French Montana had previewed. And it appears clear that Drake is, indeed, taking shots.
“Pump, pump pump it up. … I’m not a one-hit wonder, they know all my stuff. You let me turn into the nigga that you almost was,” Drake rhymed at the beginning of his verse.
It’s no hard right like “Charged Up” or knockout blow like “Back To Back,” but it’s definitely enough to show that Budden’s first strike was warranted.
But this was exactly what Budden wanted. Hours later he released his third Drake diss, “Afraid.” It continues Budden’s methodical approach of picking apart Drake: the song samples Drake’s song “The Resistance” from Thank Me Later, and flips the Drake’s sung chorus. The rhymes bring up Drake’s infamous Blackberry freestyle with Funkmaster Flex, his odd fascination (or obsession, depending who you ask) with Aaliyah, and more. “Alert the niggas that handle you. You fill tour seats, but you’re raw food to the animals,” Budden warns. To add insult to the injury, the song’s cover art depicts Toronto’s CN tower, depicted on Drake’s Views cover, as on fire.
Will Drake leave the beef at Saturday’s subliminals, or will he release another track? Either way, with how smartly he navigated the Meek Mill beef, it’ll be interesting to see how he tackles an opponent who is just as strategic.
is a journalist who covers music, pop culture, film/TV, race, culture and social justice. He is an editor at Okayplayer, and his work has appeared in Complex, Billboard, Guardian, NPR, MTV, Ebony, HipHopDX, The Flint Journal-MLive, and other publications.