A.V. Club Most Read

News Newswire Great Job, Internet!
TV Club All Reviews What's On Tonight
Video All Video A.V. Undercover A.V. Cocktail Club Film Club
Reviews All Reviews Film TV Music Books
Features All Features Newswire Movie Review
Sections Film Tv Music Food Comedy Books Games Aux
Our Company About Us Contact Advertise Privacy Policy Careers RSS
Onion Inc. Sites The Onion The A.V. Club ClickHole Onion Studios

Kid Cudi: Man On The Moon: The End Of Day

B

Kid Cudi

Album: Man On The Moon: The End Of Day
Label: Motown

Community Grade (19 Users)

  • A
  • A-
  • B+
  • B
  • B-
  • C+
  • C
  • C-
  • D+
  • D
  • D-
  • F

Your Grade

?

In its first week, Kid Cudi’s full-length debut sold more than a hundred thousand copies; in 2009, that’s enough to raise eyebrows. But Cudi’s ascent, as atypical as it’s been, says more about navigating the hip-hop of tomorrow than its impassability today. Cudi’s 2008 single “Day ’N’ Nite” placed the sing-speaking ringer/pop protégé/hipster-consultant-to-Kanye West on the same next-gen flight as Drake. But while Drake’s burps yield braggadocio and camera-angle charm, Cudi is most comfortable stoned and trapped inside his own head. Alone.

And that’s exactly where he spends most of Man On The Moon, a concept album where Cudi’s harmonized, emotionally raw LiveJournal-ing meets interstellar synth drifts. On “Soundtrack 2 My Life” he storms through his many issues early, while “Pursuit Of Happiness” (featuring both MGMT and Ratatat) finds him unpacking all the self-doubt and frigid ambition he often references in interviews. Elsewhere, executive-producer Kanye turns in an ironclad verse over a refashioned Lady Gaga sample in “Make Her Say,” a welcome respite from all the psychic bleeding. Despite the fat here, that thick layer of open, intense self-loathing is a clever way of unifying Man On The Moon as pure mood piece, a stream-of-consciousness pop voyage that’s more Phil Collins than rap.