Cruel Summer - Various Artists
Cruel Summer Image
Metascore
68

Generally favorable reviews - based on 28 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 85 Ratings

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  • Summary: This studio compilation album features artists from the G.O.O.D. Music label and guest appearances from others including: Kanye West, Jay Z, Ghostface Killah, Raekwon, Push T, R. Kelly, Common, Kid Cudi, 2 Chainz, Big Sean, DJ Khaled, Ma$e, and Teyana Taylor.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 28
  2. Negative: 0 out of 28
  1. 91
    Cruel Summer is a posse album struck in West's image, full of the same idiosyncratic bombast that has fueled his biggest hits. He's a benevolent host, letting each squad member show off his skills.
  2. Oct 25, 2012
    80
    From start to finish, this album is a great look at what G.O.O.D. Music has to offer. [No. 225, p.95]
  3. Cruel Summer might be the worst thing in Kanye West's discography thus far, but it's a success as mainstream rap cabal compilation albums go.
  4. 60
    For every fiery, self-serious verse here, you'll find at least one maladroit dud.
  5. Sep 28, 2012
    60
    Cruel Summer is certainly an accomplished CD, and perhaps by sheer numbers can claim to be as massive as it assumes, but it's mostly a disc that don't have much unifying character other than "yea, this sounds as big as G.O.O.D. Music's ego."
  6. Sep 20, 2012
    60
    Consider Cruel Summer the first real creative vacation West has taken in his illustrious career – an occasionally exhilarating, ultimately underwhelming showcase for Kanye and his friends.
  7. Sep 17, 2012
    40
    At least five of these songs [out of twelve] should've remained on the cutting room floor.

See all 28 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 19
  2. Negative: 1 out of 19
  1. Sep 20, 2012
    10
    Severely mis-appreciated - that would be the perfect way to describe Cruel Summer. The reason why the album will have a low score is notSeverely mis-appreciated - that would be the perfect way to describe Cruel Summer. The reason why the album will have a low score is not because it is bad - in fact, it's a great album. However, most reviewers (professional or not) are judging this album based of "what they expected". This is wrong; sure, considering GOOD Music's roster, the album may have been much, much better, but you have to be objective and take the album for what it is - a compilation showcasing GOOD's main artists. If you can do so, you will realize, that this is a great release. None of the other labels pay as much attention to detail as GOOD. If you listen to this album along with all the other label compilations out there, you will realize - GOOD is the best (mainstream) group out there, at the moment. Expand
  2. Sep 25, 2012
    10
    Damn im impressed a very high quality album although it could use more songs. I think a Deluxe Edition would have made Cruel Summer feel moreDamn im impressed a very high quality album although it could use more songs. I think a Deluxe Edition would have made Cruel Summer feel more complete. Enough said your getting nothing but the best with G.O.O.D. Music anything else like ym doesnt matter at all. Expand
  3. Oct 4, 2012
    10
    This is the best compilation of 2012. Idk what the critics say, but its a perfect album.

    Pros:Production, features.
    Cons: ? (none)
  4. Dec 10, 2012
    7
    If we consider tracks like "Mercy" or "Cold", we can say that Cruel Summer is one of the best Hip-Hop albums in recent years, but afterIf we consider tracks like "Mercy" or "Cold", we can say that Cruel Summer is one of the best Hip-Hop albums in recent years, but after listening the other songs, you realize that this "Compilation" does not reach even the slightest previous work of the artists who compose it. For too many of these collaborations, Cruel Summer looks more like a party failed. Expand
  5. Dec 8, 2014
    7
    Let me start by saying this: this is nowhere near the strongest work Mr. West has. That being said, even if this is the worst Ye has, it'sLet me start by saying this: this is nowhere near the strongest work Mr. West has. That being said, even if this is the worst Ye has, it's still pretty damned good. With the man himself at the helm, there are parts in this compilation where you really feel like you're in the presence of fantastic music, and other times when you're not sure what you're listening to. It's not that this project lacks attention from the leader, but more from his supporting cast. In a metaphor, it's as if Ye gave his crew a gorgeous dinner plate for supper (production), and they just threw something edible on it (lyrics). It works, just not well all the time. Essentially, the work is missing a cohesive direction, a unity that we all thought should be there for such a highly-touted label. The job is well done by most of the team, but the hiccups really show with it being just 12 tracks. It's solid, I just wish each crew member pulled the weight that Kanye did, because then we'd be looking at one of the finest compilations in a long time. Standout tracks for me were the introduction anthem, "To the World," the aptly named "Cold," and the beautifully produced "The One." Expand
  6. Mar 9, 2013
    7
    disappointed. the best songs on the album were released months before the albums release. listen to this album a few times then make room ondisappointed. the best songs on the album were released months before the albums release. listen to this album a few times then make room on your mp3 player Expand
  7. Sep 21, 2012
    3
    Was disappointed with the overall sound. Too much singing, less rapping. They tried to do way too much with the production. Where's YasiinWas disappointed with the overall sound. Too much singing, less rapping. They tried to do way too much with the production. Where's Yasiin Bey, Q-Tip, Consequence, Mr. Hudson? Why is 2 Chainz on three songs? Expand

See all 19 User Reviews