Kris' G.O.O.D. Summer Playlist

Okay so summer is “over” (or are we saying “canceled” now?) for all intents and purposes. It’s September on the calendar, Starbucks has brought back PSLs and in all seriousness, I am asking how in the bluest of blue Hells did that happen?! We eerily tip-toed through winter like playing that 90’s gem of a board game Don’t Wake Daddy fearing that we said “I mean winter really hasn’t been bad this year,” too much.

We did pay up for it with a pretty lousy spring but once summer spread her hand, as “The Ode to Newfoundland” states, Summer’s hand was a royal flush. Humidity and heat warnings became a nearly daily occurrence in at least one part of the province throughout the summer, which has to all but confirm the Chinese aren’t hoaxing us on global warming, right?

In one of those strange, unexplainable time-lapse type situations that make things that happened a little more than three months ago seem both like they happened yesterday and yet eons ago, you might remember that Kanye West launched an ambitious undertaking at the end of May by planning to release an album every Friday for five weeks straight. Two of these albums would be works of his own, with the other three featuring guest appearances and all five featuring West’s production. These projects all allegedly came out of West’s self-imposed “exile” in the Wyoming Mountains, which was reported on as far back as spring 2017.

Oh. And four of those five albums would be collections of just seven songs, with the fifth and final album being made up of just eight songs (Thank you Kanye for breaking this seven-song rule on K.T.S.E. because “WTP” is just way too good to pass up). That’s right, five alums in five weeks and they still didn’t have the number of tracks that Drake’s double album Scorpion boasted. (I kid, but seriously how many people managed to get through Scorpion in multiple, one sitting listens? One day I ran seven miles and the album still wasn’t over).

While overall I felt that the Wyoming G.O.O.D. Music releases were a bit short, so is summer, and so for that reason, I have compiled a playlist of my top seven singles from Summer 2018 so that you can enjoy over the Labour Day weekend:

1.      Kanye West- All Mine

Fitting we start with a track from Mr West. The second single from Ye was an early standout for me. The song has that appealing crossover beat with filthy pop culturally relevant lyrics and some RnB crooners like newcomer Ant Clemons on the hook for good measure.

2.      The Carters- APESHIT

NO ONE can do a surprise album release like Queen Bey, and perhaps no one can will an album into existence like yours truly; I literally was talking to The Racket’s co-owner, Tom Penney about wanting this album and just an hour later The Carters blessed me. This song has it all; an amazing visual, a hard hitting, yet tongue-in cheek rap by JAY-Z (who is by far the G.O.A.T., go ahead and @ me) and then Beyoncé comes in and just about bodies every rapper in 2018. My only quam with this song is that I wish she said “Hang with Aunt Yoncé, I’ll make you famous” instead of “Hang one night with 'Yoncé, I'll make you famous”

3.      Justin Timberlake- SoulMate

Summer starts now! And technically we were at least two weeks in by the time this track was released, but then again the last two singles were released before the summer solstice so let’s forgive JT for coming late to the party? Apparently many aren’t forgiving him for Man of the Woods or his very good, but not amazingly over the top Super Bowl Half Time performance but we didn’t have to skip past other potential summer jams from the new album like “Sauce”, “Waves” and the aptly titled “Midnight Summer Jam” did we? “SoulMate” sounds like it belongs with those three songs and to be played at the height of the season.

4.      Drake- In My Feelings

I know I took a little shot at Drake earlier for the length and general "filler-ness" of Scorpion, but the album does have a few standouts and oddly enough on first listen, “In My Feelings” was not one of them for me. Drizzy is the Streaming King so it would not be surprising that in an alternate universe this song would have still become a major hit without a viral dance challenge, but you have to also credit that Lil Wayne sample and those life-altering mantras from the City Girls for making this song a summer smash.

5.      U2 x Cheat Codes- Love Is Bigger Than Anything In Its Way

Still together after more than four decades, U2 managed to snag another number one single, this time on the dance charts. There are those out there that may think they cheated since there are about as many remixes to this Songs of Experience single as there are years the band has been together, but this mash-up with Cheat Codes provides perhaps the most interesting interpretation. The original version of this song is a love letter from Bono to his children, but it became something of an LGBTQ+ celebration with a video that featured Irish members of the community and the remix seems like it was made for a Pride parade. Plus, Bono still proves his voice can power an anthem even in 2018.

6.      Ariana Grande- God is a woman

With no tears left to cry, Ms. Grande unveiled this actual BANGER to the world complete with religiously provocative music video that would make even Like A Prayer-era Madonna proud. Sexy and empowering, this song has it all.

7.      Nicki Minaj- Barbie Dreams

I felt like Nicki Minaj had all the pressure to deliver with Queen, and thankfully I think she did. This album suffered a messy release rollout and I did not get it in time for my summer road trip and it was out almost two full days before I got to listen to it in its entirety. That said, I heard the buzz about “Barbie Dreams” shortly after the album’s release and I broke my rule of listening to a new album in its entirety from start to finish just to hear this song and it did not disappoint! A fun little tongue-in-cheek rap tune that yeah, Biggie did it first, (even Minaj herself did a version of this about mixtape rapper peers back in 2007). However today in 2018 she is rapping about her peers who just happen to be hip-hop heavyweights just like Herself, and no other female rapper has ever been on quite the same footing as the Queen is.

Take a listen to Kris’ G.O.O.D. Summer Playlist below: