Kid Cudi- Indicud

Kid Cudi’s 18-track sombriety, originally published on Pop ‘stache, read below:

Kid Cudi breaks away from his Man On The Moon almost-trilogy with Indicud, his third album, released on April 16. Cudi’s recent leave from Kanye’s G.O.O.D. Music label to focus on his own Wicked Awesome Records marks a bold step towards a higher volume of self-produced tracks. Indicud, fully produced by Cudi apart from “Red Eye” (co-produced by Hit-Boy), exemplifies the beginning of this respectable transition. Tracks “New York City Rage Fest” and “The Flight Of The Moon Man” exhibit Cudi’s production skills, abilities that likely override his rhyming game on Indicud.

Indicud is an especially long album- capping at 70 minutes- plenty of time and space to show us what Cudi can do. Guests RZA, King Chip, A$AP Rocky, Kendrick Lamar and Michael Bolton hint at a gold album, but even with 18 tracks to prove himself quality-tuned and progressive, Kid Cudi falls short.

Playing like a gloomy apocalyptic soundtrack, most of Indicud’s tracks seem to blend together into dark, low-toned, minor monotony. Opening track “The Resurrection of Scott Mescudi” is a dim intro, beats almost nonexistent, setting listeners up for a far-from-uplifting album.

Too many tracks are bland, confined by mild flavors, hyper-subdued beats and repetitive lyrical themes. There’s nothing wrong with a minimal style, but when an album lacks capacities to hook, so will it lack large-scale positive reception. Indicud is clearly an intentional stray from his catchier, dancier styles on Man On The Moon I and II, but the concern stems from its ambiguously drawn new direction. Lyrically, Indicud declares not much more than a redundant delivery of his mistrust in the world and fake former friends. Few tracks discuss deeper revelations or even the slightest bit of interesting thought. The one realization we can obtain from Indicud is just how deep Cudi’s struggles with sobriety go, as themes frequently return to his need to smoke weed in this album as well as in the media surrounding him.

The overdue verbal strength on “Brothers (feat. King Chip and A$AP Rocky)” (listen: right above) raps about hood camaraderie and appreciation for loyal friendship. With each guest hosting a verse on the topic, A$AP shines while Chip and Cudi follow close behind. Cudi’s concluding line “The brothers that I never had made my life a lot less sad” wraps a larger album theme in which Cudi increasingly differentiates between those worth his brotherhood and those most certainly not. “The Unfuckwittable” calmly sings about taking a higher path and seeking good over fake in the world, demonstrating clarity for Cudi both in production and lyrical content. Second single “Immortal” (listen: way above) expresses his newfound sense of inner peace, while referencing his history of depression and lack of sustainable hope. These tracks are humbling amongst an album of heavy, ill-expressed pride.

“Just What I Am” is a refreshing dip out of Indicud’s pool of lonely sounds, honoring Cudi’s recognizable style with stimulating flow and high vocal energy. Echoing beats backdrop nicely for Cudi’s ultra-slow motion dub production. Lyrics remain dark, as Cudi outlines his struggles again with quitting weed and dealing with the “troubled, scary” world we live in:  “Hm, when it rains it pours, whiskey bottles on the sinks and floors / Everyday to find sane’s a chore, amidst a dream with no exit doors.”

Self-referential music should be valued; honesty is courageous and Cudi’s struggles and subsequent expressions certainly do warrant recognition. Maybe it’s time for Cudi to alleviate some of his public darkness though, before he loses relevancy and a patient fanbase to the more creative lyrics of one of many hip hop artists reaching for fame today.

Kid Cudi – Indicud tracklist:

  1. “The Resurrection Of Scott Mescudi”
  2. “Unfuckwittable”
  3. “Just What I Am (feat. King Chip)”
  4. “Young Lady (feat. Father John Misty)”
  5. “King Wizard”
  6. “Immortal”
  7. “Solo Dolo Part II (feat. Kendrick Lamar)”
  8. “Girls (feat. Too Short)”
  9. “New York City Rage Fest”
  10. “Red Eye (feat. Haim)”
  11. “Mad Solar”
  12. “Beez (feat. RZA)”
  13. “Brothers (feat. King Chip & A$AP Rocky)”
  14. “Burn Baby Burn”
  15. “Lord Of The Sad And Lonely”
  16. “Cold Blooded”
  17. “Afterwards (Bring Yo Friends) (feat. Michael Bolton & King Chip)”
  18. “The Flight Of The Moon Man”

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