Monday, June 10th, 2019

Ed Sheeran ft. Chance the Rapper & PnB Rock – Cross Me

Given that header image, our score could be much worse…


Jacob Sujin Kuppermann: My expectations for this were practically nonexistent, but 2019’s Corny Dude Summit (inaugurated by Jackson-McCartney 1982) actually works out fine! By packing in two collaborators, Sheeran himself doesn’t have enough space to say anything truly annoying, and while Chance has a couple punchlines that don’t land, he also is back in charming form after a series of disappointing verses. But the MVP here, weirdly enough, is PnB Rock, who brings in a smooth hook that undergirds the two larger artists, preventing them from wandering off away from the track’s relatively compact premise.

Katherine St Asaph: The [5]est of [5]s, but an extra point for the couple seconds throughout where it sounds like “Cross Me” is about to go into a bounce break. (The fact that it doesn’t is why this is the [5]est of [5]s.)

Alfred Soto: Sheeran sounds convincing crooning love man blather over second generation Isley Bros finger snaps, humiliating Chance the Rapper and his attempt at a #woke verse. Yet “Cross Me” in toto plays like a middling cross-genre post-Spotify redress of “Shape of You.”

Jonathan Bradley: The antipathy to Phil Collins has long confused me — in his home country, in particular, he seems to epitomize flailed blokey striving. He’s a doofy looking white guy, sure, but he’s got bangers. It hurts me every time I realize Ed Sheeran is his 21st century incarnation.

Tim de Reuse: An anthem for that one straight couple you knew in college who never shut up about how strong and committed their relationship is even though the dude still casually refers to her as “the ol’ ball and chain” whenever she’s out of earshot. Neat bassline, though!

Edward Okulicz: If you wanna be my friend, you gotta get with my lover. Well there’s the inversion of that pop trope I didn’t know I didn’t want. But it’s got a neat, popping bassline, and Ed Sheeran could legit make a decent hook singer for rap tracks. When thinking about him making them, my general response is more “eh Sheeran,” but his bit’s better than Chance’s. Honestly.

Alex Clifton: The PnB prechorus is decent. The rest of this is, err, certainly a song.

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