Tuesday, September 15, 2009

First Run Review: Kid Cudi-Man on the Moon

Aight, so Cudi finally dropped his debut album today, I made sure to get this one in. Off top the packaging for the deluxe edition is purty dope. I'm expecting quite a bit from this record, and we'll see what happens. Remeber 5 is my highest score...

1. In my Dream
First track starts with a haunting percussive sequence as Kid Cudi comes in singing "I dont worry bout anything. You're in my dreams". Nice strings off top. Seems to drag on a bit though....until Common comes in with a nice narrative.
Score: 4
2. Soundtrack 2 my Life
Nice electronic drums and sharp handclaps get your head bobbin quick immediately. Cudi spit an introspective verse about his youth filled with emotions. Very big hook. 2nd v Cudi continues his melodic story. Interesting breakdown with reverse guitars
Score: 3.5
3. Simple As
"ABC" loops throughout with Cudi spittin a familiar melody on his verses. Common appears again to add to the story.
Score 3
4. Solo Dolo
A Haunting string pizzicato introduces this interesting track. I heard this earlier, but added string score is a nice touch. Cudi asks "Why must it feel so wrong, when I'm tryin to do right?"
If this is supposed to be a nightmare, I think it accomplishes it s goal.
Score 4
5. Heart of a Lion
Another I heard a live version of. Very nice drums as the song opens up to another Larger than Life hook from Cudder, before dropping back to simplicity. His verses are serving as extra instrumentation at this point, laced with introspective and inspirational sayings.
Score: 4.5
6. My World
A smooth piano and electric guitar start this slow banger. Cudi speaks on his past angst towards being overlooked. Another string laced hook, adding another dimension to the songs story.
Score 3
7. Day n Nite
Of course we all know this one. Really doesn't hold up to some of the other tracks, might just be cuz I've heard it so much.
Score 3.5
8. Sky might Fall
Another one I heard early from the Transformers campaign. Still a solid song. At this point you realize this is much more than a Rap album, either you embrace it or get tired of it. Really just depends on how much of this you personally like.
Score 3
9. Enter Galactic
Cudi picks the tempo up on this one and croons to the ladies. Decent production, feels kinda like an old Jamiroquai song, with a Daft Punk breakdown. A lil more Common
Score 2.75
10. Alive
Enough fun, as we're taken into another dark track courtesy of Ratatat. I like this beat , plus tha reverse guitar effect Ratatat is known for doesn't hurt. More of the same from cudi, mostly sang until the final verse, which is subpar. Overall I'm down tho...
11. Cudi Zone
This spacey beat serves as a plate for a quick Cudi flow bout his accomplishments. This serves as contrast to the high pitched hook. Nothing too new, coulda taken Dose of Dopeness here instead (haha!)
Score: 2.5
12. Make Her Say
Easily the most out of place track of the album. Gotta get those features in tho...
Score 3
13. Pursuit of Happyness
Electric guitar leads into a simplistic chord laden track. MGMT makes their apperance on the hook. A slow but smooth one.
Score 3
14. Hyyerr
Smooth was an understatement as this banger opens up with a nice southern drums and warm strings. Ohio native Chip the Ripper adds his vocals to this one. Cudi brings a nice verse here for the folks hatin on his flows. This ones for the cheifers out there.
Score 4
15. Up Up and Away
Acoustic guitar drives this upbeat song. Cudi talks about staying focused on his goals. Right when it seemed things were happy, Common comes back to end things with the hint of a sequel....
Score 3.3

Overall, this lived up to my expectations. I doubt any other album in the "hip-hop" genre will sound close to this in 09. Most of these songs lean on melodies and epic hooks that no rapper can provide consistently. By no means has Cudi mastered the art of flow or singing, but I think he does whats needed to make memorable songs. Production value is high, but replay value will be low for the general audience(no club bangers here). This is a solid debut that sets Kid Cudi appart from any one genre, now lets hope the masses can handle the moon man too.

Production 4.5
Concepts: 4

Overall: 4

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