Editors’ Notes Some couples repair rifts in their relationships with expensive therapy. Beyoncé and JAY-Z tour stadiums together and surprise-release collaborative albums that mine their self-mythologized personal drama for big-ticket entertainment. Sonically closer to Beyoncé’s 2016 high-art airing of dirty laundry Lemonade than Jay’s 2017 response 4:44, this isn’t just rubbernecking at the doings inside America’s royal family—it’s a challenging, tense, and thoroughly catchy summertime romp in its own right. When Beyoncé sings, “I can’t believe we made it,” in the appropriately aggressive “APES**T,” she might be referring to the détente in their high-profile marriage; she might mean this very album. The fun is in decoding—but it’s hardly the only fun.

SONG
SUMMER
1
4:45
 
APESHIT
2
4:24
 
BOSS
3
4:04
 
NICE
4
3:53
 
713
5
3:13
 
FRIENDS
6
5:44
 
HEARD ABOUT US
7
3:10
 
BLACK EFFECT
8
5:15
 
LOVEHAPPY
9
3:49