Old news in the music world still deserves to be talked about.
I say this because after projects get released they have a tendency to dismissed and swept under the carpet after the initial release, especially if these projects are not received well.
So, as the title states, this post is in defence of Kid Cudi.
As a secondary preface to this post, I want to openly express my admiration and respect for Mr. Rager. Since his album Man On The Moon: The End of Day was released. Each project he released takes a small amount of time to grow on me, but inevitably they seem to find their way in to regular rotation. It’s safe to say that Kid Cudi is in my Top 5 favourite musicians (if I had to put a list together), BUT I would not say that he is one of my Top 5 favourite rappers. Simply put, it would be a disservice to his musical ability to pigeon hole him as just a rapper. Obviously I am going to have a huge bias for what is about to come, but really, I don’t think I am going to say anything too radical or controversial… well, maybe…
So… the purpose of this post is in defence of Kid Cudi. More specifically it is in defence of his latest project. This album dropped earlier this year and before it was released it had amassed a certain level of controversy. Not controversy in terms of what he had to say, but the sonic offering of the tracks. So, Kid Cudi and his Grammy nominated producer friend, Dot Da Genius, released an album under the moniker WZRD that has been labelled a “rock album.” (side note, please don’t be so foolish as to compare this to lil wayne’s sad attempt at a rock album)Kid Cudi has been criticized by his fans online for having strayed from his roots as a hip-hop artist/rapper, with many calling this album terrible.
A recent album review from Earmilk.com supports my claims here, when I also say that his is the album that Kid Cudi has always wanted to create (in fact they said it first, I just totally agree and wanted to talk about it a bit). Kid Cudi’s affinity for making music and redefining what “hip-hop” is can be witnessed throughout all of his previous works. If you were to go through the list of collaborators on Man On The Moon: End Of Day, you would hear the likes of both MGMT and Ratatat, who leave their unique imprint on some of the bigger tracks on the record. Even Up Up & Away plays through with a dominant guitar riff. Next up we have Man On The Moon 2: The Legend of Mr. Rager that features the talent of St. Vincent. The collaborators on this album do not solely reveal his mixture of genres, as the track REVOFEV sounds more akin to a rock, protest, motivation song than a hip-hop track.
Honestly, I could go on for paragraphs and digital pages about why WZRD should not be dismissed to quickly because it is not a typical release from Kid Cudi. However, hip-hop was created through a pastiche of genres and mixing beats which has given it its unique sound since its inception in to American culture. Ironically, even though WZRD has been called a rock album, Dot Da Genius masterfully produced this album using samples and electronic sounds to create the sound of a band. This album was put together like any conventional hip-hop album and I think that in itself is a testament to Kid Cudi. He gets a lot of flack for being critical of his fans, but I will stand by his side regardless. Maybe it is because I had the privilege this fall of hearing him do a spectacular cover of Hey Joe! by Jimi Hendrix, or I just have a soft spot for the Man on the Moon, but none the less, I ask you to take a listen to WZRD and really take the time to digest what it is all about, and what Kid Cudi is all about.
Here is Teleport 2 Me, Jamie, which is all about his baby momma.
Tune in Thursday from 5-6pm to find out why New York is still great when it comes to producing hip-hop!