Written By: Victoria Hill
Label: G.O.O.D./Universal – Rating:
You may not be familiar with the name Kid Cudi, but you might be familiar with his work. In the past year or so, Cudi has worked with Kanye West (he guested on “Welcome To Heartbreak” and helped write “Heartless” and “Paranoid” off 808’s & Heartbreak), Robin Thicke, The Black Eyed Peas and Jay-Z (on the track “Already Home” off The Blueprint 3) to name a few.
Kid Cudi hails from New York, but he is originally from Cleveland, Ohio. He released his first mixtape, A Kid Named Cudi, in collaboration with NY streetwear brand 10. Deep as a free download. The mixtape got Kanye West’s attention and he signed Cudi to his G.O.O.D. Music label.
Man On The Moon: The End Of The Day is Kid Cudi’s debut album. Experimental, daring, poppy and trippy, Kid pushes what the definition of a hip-hop album is. With production from Kanye, Emile, Plain Pat and dance acts Ratatat and MGMT, the album’s beats further Cudi’s lyrics of pain, love and getting high – What impressed me was that the album was divided into five acts, with the songs falling into a particular act. The move is very theatrical and creative.
Cudi has already released two hit singles, “Day ‘N’ Night” and “Make Her Say” (featuring Kanye West and Common), which has an acoustic sample of Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face.”
Losing his father at a young age to cancer and seeing his mother struggle, Cudi uses this inspiration to create his own anthem. “Heart Of A Lion (Kid Cudi Theme Music)” shows Cudi becoming a lion- strong against the world. “At the end of the day my momma told me don’t let no one break me/At the end of the day I’m walking with a heart of a lion.”
“My World” is another rising up anthem. Speaking again to his loss and struggle, Cudi shows how he keeps moving forward despite growing up lonely, having low self esteem and being different because “one day, this will be my world (I told you so).”
“Hyyerr” is dedicated to wonders of smoking weed. I have never gotten high, but listening to this track, I think I might have an idea of what it feels like. The beat and delivery are slow and drawn out to a slurred state.
“Up Up & Away” is a perfect closer to this great album. A soulful jam session, Cudi delivers the perfect message about living life and doing what you want to do. “They gone judge me anyway…so whatever.”
Kid Cudi is a unique presence in hip-hop and he has a bright future ahead of him. He is probably one of the most interesting characters to emerge from hip-hop this year.