Nicki Minaj teamed up with Chris Brown, Drake, and Lil Wayne for the third single, “Only,” off her last album, The Pinkprint. This track follows both “Pills N Potions” and “Anaconda.” “Anaconda” set a Vevo record with 19.6 million views in the first 24 hours.
This song is more hip-hop than her first two singles, and while Nicki is repetitive in her rhymes, it works. She shuts down rumors of ever having relations with Drake and Lil Wayne, and uses a line from “Did It On Em,” referring to females as her sons. Overall, I feel that her rhymes have been better, but it was an okay verse.
It’s been rumored that Nicki has broken up with her longtime boyfriend, and Drake and Lil Wayne add fuel to the fire with their rhymes. Enter Drake, who kept me interested in the song. His word play is always clever; even the simplest of bars. He builds on what Nicki said, saying they had never messed around, but once her man is out of the picture, he’s first in line. He dwells on his love for Nicki and all parts of her before Lil Wayne steps in.
Weezy raps about how he too never had any relations with Nicki, and that her man never pleased her to begin with. I had to listen to the track twice to really hear what he was saying, because it sounded like he was mumbling. His voice is really low on this track compared to others. Despite it being low, he still spit his bars and they made sense.
As for Chris Brown, thankfully, he’s only singing the hook and not rapping. It would have been great if Nicki had constructed a hook similar to her flow on “Chiraq,” but Chris did not ruin the song. I would have loved for the beat to be a bit harder, but it was alright.
The song is not raunchy compared to “Anaconda,” despite the explicit lyrics. It’s different than her other two singles and has a more hip-hop vibe. This will definitely hit urban radio in rotation with no problem, especially with the Drake feature. Although it’s Nicki’s track, her label mates made the song. Major points to the song for having a theme.