Nine years ago, Kanye West assembled his G.O.O.D Music Avengers for Cruel Summer, a compilation filled with stacked collaborations across the board. With the project having recently celebrated another year of existence, it feels appropriate to highlight one of the definitive tracks, which also happens to be a relatively straightforward banger — “Clique,” featuring Big Sean, JAY-Z, and Kanye West.
Given the talent of lyricists on deck, you already know that “Clique” will shine in the bars department. And while Sean and HOV certainly hold it down, it’s Kanye West who absolutely snaps in the final verse. His signature wit and slick flow are on full display, and though it might sound shocking to some, he’s actually refreshingly self-aware on this one. “He wasn’t really drunk, he just had a frew brews,” he raps, setting up an effortless scheme. “Pass the refreshments, a cool, cool beverage / Everything I do need a news crew’s presence.”
Though it might lack the poignancy to truly resonate as one of Kanye’s finest verses, his work on “Clique” highlights his many strengths as an emcee. Nine years removed from Cruel Summer, how do you feel the compilation album has aged?
Blame it on the pigment, we livin’ no limits
Them gold Master P ceilings was just a figment
Of our imagination, MTV cribs
Now I’m lookin’ at a crib right next to where TC lives
That’s Tom Cruise, whatever she accuse
He wasn’t really drunk, he just had a frew brews
Pass the refreshments, a cool, cool beverage
Everything I do need a news crew’s presence