Cruel Summer is the second track of Taylor Swift's seventh album Lover. It was released on August 23, 2019.
Meaning and Background
Taylor said the following about the song: "This song is one that I wrote about the feeling of a summer romance, and how often times a summer romance can be layered with all these feelings of, like, pining away and sometimes even secrecy. It deals with the idea of being in a relationship where there's some element of desperation and pain in it, where you're yearning for something that you don't quite have yet, it's just right there, and you just, like, can't reach it. So, this has some of my favorite lyrics on it, and it was so fun to write this. Jack and Annie did the track and a lot of the instrumentation, and I did the topline in whatever language that is. A topline is all the notes and the lyrics you hear. So whatever you would sing, that is what I wrote on this. It was just so fun to write this one and I really love this one. Jack and I like to do ranting bridges. Like in 'Out of the Woods' where the bridge is the biggest moment of the song — we revisited that concept.""
- The song title was hinted at in the You Need to Calm Down music video.
- Taylor Swift Shares Intimate Details of 'Lover' Songs During Secret Session | iHeartRadio - https://www.iheart.com/content/2019-08-23-taylor-swift-shares-intimate-details-of-lover-songs-during-secret-session/