Photo: n/aThe long awaited Cruel Summer from Kanye West‘s label/crew G.O.O.D. Music is upon us today. Among the artists featured on the mega hip-hop tapestry include John Legend, Common, Pusha T, Big Sean, CyHi da PrynceQ-Tip, Kid Cudi, Teyana Taylor, 2 Chainz, and of course Kanye himself. While, Jay-Z,  R. Kelly, and Ghostface Killah make appearances, too. ‘Ye’s little empire, if you will, assembled with the acronym “Getting Out Our Dreams.” Some fantastic rhymes abound just by the nature of the super-crew. Pusha T is calling it the Hermes of hip-hop. We don’t have a Greek mythology counter-rep for that, but we’ve got five lyrics so far that we’re thinking just might hit mythological status:

Mercy‘ feat. Kanye West, Big Sean, Pusha T, and 2 Chainz

This was the first single released off the album and there are undoubtedly throngs of people who think this five-minute-plus song is sick. We don’t get it. There isn’t much going on in the lyrics other than some insufferable bragging of how Kanye thinks he is the shit because of the doors on his car and his Audemar watch. 2 Chainz and Big Sean are also featured in the song, along with an intro by Fuzzy Jones; but it is Kanye’s section (as usual) that is especially self-masturbatory and even makes reference to the title character of the 2009 film, Precious. Stay classy, Kanye.  Stay classy: [LISTEN]

Tell ‘em give me fifty million or I’mma quit
Most rappers taste level ain’t at my waist level
Turn up the bass ’til it’s up-in-your-face level
Don’t do no press but I get the most press, kid
Plus, yo my bitch make your bitch look like Precious

New God Flow‘ feat. Kanye West, Pusha T, and Ghostface Killah

Photo: n/aPusha T said that this song is, “just my way of saying that my level [of] hip-hop and level of lyricism is just Godly.” We don’t have anything snarky to add to this quote. But you should know, because Pusha’s statement goes a long way to explaining the cocky attitude about himself that he has also instilled in every syllable of this number. He is the “god of everything else” you know. But it’s all good – it’s just like that Bible passage: “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-not by works, so that no one can boast…Just kidding! Fuck those humble guys! * - Ephesians 2:8-9:” [LISTEN]

I believe there’s a god above me
I’m just the god of everything else
I put holes in everything else
“New God Flow,” fuck everything else
Supreme dope dealer, write it in bold letters
They love a nigga’s spirit like Pac at the Coachella

*yeah, I made that last part up to underline a point.

Clique‘ feat. Kanye West, Jay-Z, Big Sean

The fourth single off of Cruel Summer, once again, Jay-Z reliably tells us that we can never come close to his level and Kanye recites a laundry list of things he has, including property next to Tom Cruise and a girlfriend who first gained notoriety for her sex tape (“My girl a superstar all from a home movie”).  So, we suppose, lyrical inspiration can come from just about anywhere. The repetition of the song’s title, “Clique,” via Big Sean, pulls double-duty here by referring both to the narrator’s posse, and has the onomatopoetic effect of sounding like the clicking of paparazzi cameras. You know, because we are all so interested: [LISTEN]

Ain’t nobody fucking with my
Clique, clique, clique, clique, clique
Ain’t nobody fresher than my muthafuckin
Clique, clique, clique, clique, clique
As I look around, they don’t do it like my
Clique, clique, clique, clique, clique
And all these bad bitches, man, they want the
They want the, they want the

Bliss‘ feat. John Legend and Teyana Taylor

Photo: n/aA soulful R&B number from voice-like-butter singer John Legend, laced with Teyana Taylor, it’s a nice sultry pairing, with lyrics that explore what it means to get over yourself, overcome some obstacles, dreams even (acronym wink), and truly go after love. No hate here. Teyana Taylor sermonizes: [LISTEN]

I love the way we livin’ boy
But my daddy say, “You don’t need that boy”
So let’s run away, let’s run away
Momma say I’m too young for love
And lovin’ you is all I’m thinkin’ of
My heart tells me that you’re the one
It’s the feeling you give, it is

Cold‘ feat. Kanye West and DJ Khaled

Photo: n/aIt seems Kanye enjoys airing his dirty laundry about his relationships in public as much as Taylor Swift. “Cold” makes reference to his new girlfriend, Kim Kardashian, her ex Khris Humphries (a member of the Brooklyn Nets of which Jay-Z is a part-owner), his breakup with Amber Rose, and his various feelings towards other celebs. It could be considered daring material for a song that is deeply personal to the artist; you could also say that it feels like reading a tabloid: [LISTEN]

And I’ll admit, I had fell in love with Kim
Around the same time she had fell in love with him
Well that’s cool, baby girl, do ya thang
Lucky I ain’t had Jay drop him from the team
La Familia, Roc Nation
We in the building, we still keep it basement
We flyer than a parakeet, floatin’ with no parachute
Six thousand dollar pair of shoes, I made it to the Paris news
Don’t talk about style cause I’ll embarrass you
Shut the fuck up when you talk to me ‘fore I embarrass you