A picture frame of an explosion…or a picture into Cudi’s mind?
“You can look all over, but no you’ll never find, hot shit like mine. Woop, it blow your mind.”
These were the words my friends and I would slur together over midnight blunt cruises in high school. Back when Kid Cudi was “Dat New New.” That was four years ago. A lot can change in four years. An entire audience of young people can go from graduating high school to graduating college. Then the real world hits, and people slow down. Perhaps the best example of this is Kid Cudi himself.
When Kid Cudi walked out on stage during his first tour smoking a blunt, he became the leader of an entire generation of lonely stoners. He rapped about getting drunk, getting high and having problems with women. He’d get drunk and high with his fans at every concert he performed. He was the party rapper hipster stoner. He could relate to the fans, and they loved him for it.
After his second album came out, Man on the Moon II, Cudi announced he was done smoking weed. It came out of nowhere, and many fans were actually upset about it. It was the first time Cudi’s problems with addiction were brought to light. Lonely stoners realized for the first time the toll their idol’s lifestyle was taking on him.
Then Cudi all but disappeared until he released WZRD, which I won’t talk about because I don’t consider it an actual album. Now, the Cudi whose no longer a kid gives us something else unexpected: Indicud. Obviously the title is a play on the indica strain of marijuana, but Cudi no longer smokes, so I’m confused. What does a lonely stoner rap about when he’s no longer a lonely stoner?
Well, there’s still plenty of psychedelic verses that will appeal to his original audience (if they still smoke pot). There’s some guest artists; A$AP Rocky, Kendrick Lamar, RZA and King Chip. But one thing there’s not is a stoner ballad. No “Day N’ Nite,” “Soundtrack 2 My Life,” “Solo Dolo,” “Erase Me,” or “Marijuana.”
Instead, there’s a whole lotta shit that I can’t understand because the syntho-whining noises drown out Cudi’s seemingly tone-deaf sing-rap that I miss so much. And it’s depressing. It makes Man on the Moon II sound happy. But at the same time, it’s real. Cudi is struggling with life after drug addiction and fame. It’s obviously influenced his artistic ability.
“I need to smoke,” sings Cudi on “Just What I Am.”
A lot can change in four years. I want the old Cudi back, but then I realize that I, too, have changed. Accepting it is the hard part.
Songs you should listen to:
“Just What I Am”
“Solo Dolo Part II”