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Pop Rewind: Bananarama “Cruel Summer”

Hey! Anyone remember that scene in The Karate Kid when Ralph Macchio’s character is trying to figure out the rules in a new high school, and that blond-haired kid that knows karate keeps bullying him? Remember the bouncy-but-sad song playing in the background while that’s going on? That’s how most of America originally became familiar with “Cruel Summer” by UK girl group Bananarama. Actually, that song is a textbook example […]

The “Cruel Summer” Controversy

Unlike Lil Wayne’s Dedication 4, which elicited the immediate ire of fans and critics alike, Kanye West/G.O.O.D. Music’s Cruel Summer has affected a genre-wide split of opinion. This isn’t unprecedented for a AAA pop album, but for the oft-game-changing Mr. West, mediocrity is every bit as unprecedented as spontaneous combustion. In fact, had Yeezy straight up whiffed on this one, it might have been easier to process. As it stands, […]

Kanye West/G.O.O.D. Music, “Cruel Summer”—Album Review

Def Jam/G.O.O.D. Music (2012)

As far as vanity label collaborative albums go, you could find much worse specimens than Kanye West/G.O.O.D. Music’s Cruel Summer. That the LP ultimately falls short of its potential owes less to the talents of those involved than to the fact that the G.O.O.D. Music stable, and Kanye West in particular, has such an extraordinary surplus of potential as to make anything less than a classic seem disappointing by comparison. […]

Kanye West premiers “Cruel Summer” at Cannes, to mixed reactions

Last week, the runaway train of Kanye West’s ambition once more jumped the rails to another artistic medium. As proven by the erstwhile MC’s recent dalliances in the world of fashion, Yeezy is constitutionally unable to satisfy himself by occupying a single culture outlet, even if the rest of the world kind of wishes he would. It’s a testament to the man’s energy that he’s been able to make such […]