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Cruel Summer

G.O.O.D. Music

Cruel Summer

Kanye West's compilation "crew" album featuring artists signed to his G.O.O.D. Music collective, plus assorted other hip hop luminaries

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Def Jam
UK Release date
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  1. 8.0 |   The Guardian

    While the ear-catching moments belong to the guests, West's touch is detectable everywhere and in the refrain, "Mitt Romney don't pay no tax", he may have the best line on the album
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  2. 7.5 |   Beats Per Minute

    If this album signifies the beginning of Kanye’s descent into the “too rich to care, too big to fail” space occupied by many of his peers, well, it was a good run
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  3. 7.0 |   NME

    After the twin peaks of ‘Watch The Throne’ and ‘My Beautiful Twisted Dark Fantasy’’s rap-pop grandeur, ‘Cruel Summer’ feels slight in comparison. Still, as a cross section of the most brilliant, solipsistic mind in rap, it’s an essential purchase
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  4. 7.0 |   No Ripcord

    It says something about Kanye West’s ability that it’s a disappointment that this album doesn’t change music in some way like the triptych of The College Dropout, Late Registration and MBDTF did. But don’t get me wrong, it’s a good album
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  5. 6.7 |   Pretty Much Amazing

    It delivers some blistering singles but it is ultimately uneven. The artists featured all have something to offer on their own, but as they scramble a top one another a sense of any group dynamic is lost in the fray
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  6. 6.5 |   Pitchfork

    A handful of guests aside, none of G.O.O.D. Music's personalities do much to justify their newfound prominence. If Cruel Summer is meant to be an argument for the label's other talent, it makes a weak case
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  7. 6.0 |   Spin

    A runway show of small, costly, uncomfortable missteps
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  8. 6.0 |   Rolling Stone

    The first real creative vacation West has taken in his illustrious career
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  9. 6.0 |   The Independent

    The music Kanye West reserves for his own albums is so much more ambitious than that apportioned to the collaborations on this compilation... Which isn't to say it's not effective
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  10. 6.0 |   Consequence Of Sound

    If we ever get a Cruel Summer sequel, let’s hope it’ll be a little tighter in focus and a lot more exclusive about what and whom it allows in
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  11. 6.0 |   PopMatters

    Every track on this album has a flaw worth pointing out, but they all make an argument why they’re worth listening to as well
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  12. 6.0 |   The Irish Times

    You’ll find his name attached to very few duds, and this collection, featuring acts signed to his Good Music label, packs a tough punch
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  13. 6.0 |   Prefix

    These sidekicks all fail for the same reason: for them, the high life is the object, but for Kanye, it's the subject
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  14. 5.8 |   A.V. Club

    The problem is that on this album, West, who raps on most of the its 12 tracks, often seems disconnected from anything beyond his ego
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  15. 5.0 |   Slant Magazine

    Even as a high-pedigree compilation, it still falls flat
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  16. 5.0 |   BBC

    Maybe fatigue is a factor on Cruel Summer, a thin and largely unfocused effort
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