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The Man On The Moon II: The Legend Of Mr. Rager (Album Review)

17 Nov

KiD CuDi Returns with Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager

For many youth still discovering the world, life tends to share its dark side quite often. This can be quite depressing, leaving you alone with just a dark cloud hovering over your shitstorm of a life. We long to grasp for anything that we can identify with. Guess what, Kid Cudi knows this, and has given us music that we can all relate to. His first album Man on the Moon: The End of Day, let us into the dream world of Scott Mescudi, showing us his deepest inner feelings and insecurity, while giving us an album that hits you on two different levels: A party-starting, dance-inducing insensibility and an introspective, visual-creating stupor. Based on my recollection, very few albums in recent years have been able to capture my imagination, and make me want to dance the whole time its playing, as well as The End of Day could. Cudi really made an impact on the hip-hop scene, using big name collaborations to create music nobody really expected, leaving some to just create a whole new genre for him: Trip-Hop.

With such high expectations coming into his sophomore album, not just from me, but also from basically every person with a pair of working eardrums, it was hard to properly review this album right away. Many of the songs on the album I had already listened to and made my verdict on, with some songs receiving a good rating and some just not making the cut for me. However what I didn’t consider was how the whole album would sound unabridged. Upon my first full listen, it became easily apparent early on as to where Cudi was taking us; There is a dark vibe that runs through pretty much every song in the album, whether in the instrumentals or the lyrics. This shouldn’t come as much of a shocker to most Cudi fans, as we have all witnessed a very damaging and unabashed downward spiral for the young superstar since his release of The End of Day. The good thing is this hasn’t made him change his flow, or lose his ability to deeply torment both the mind and body. Cudi masterfully raps over some of the most free-form beats ever heard on a hip-hop album, and does so without missing an offbeat. What is different about this album is the lack of club hits; this album has more of a laidback sound, making the listener sit down and immerse themselves into the ominous fantasy world of Scott Mescudi.

The lack of collaborations with other artists on the album leaves much of the time spent listening to just Cudi’s rap style and virtuosity, something that might have been lacking in the previous album. However, the artists that do appear on the album, albeit few in numbers, definitely provide that extra kick to each of their songs. The first track, “Scott Mescudi vs. The World” features ex-Gnarls Barkley vocalist and the singer of the hugely successful song “Fuck You”, Cee-Lo Green, takes over the chorus with his uniquely retro voice painted over violins and a wonderful keyboard riff that makes for a perfect opening to the album.

R&B queen Mary J. Blige lends her talents on “Don’t Play This Song”, a big middle finger from Cudi to all of the people who don’t support his lifestyle choices. Cudi’s good friend Kanye West spits a couple verses on probably the most Billboard tolerated song on the album “Erase Me”. With it’s heavily distorted rock band sound and melody, this is sure to be one of the biggest hits off the album.

A very unexpected collaboration with Cage & St. Vincent on the song “MANIAC” results in a very indie sounding tune with an intricate melody that echoes the title of the song. The track, “Marijuana” just happens to be one of the high points of the entire album using a keyboard to create a gentle lullaby, as a fusion drums and electric guitar blooms sounds only imaginable after a nice long drag from a fat blunt. The song is exactly 4:20 (with Cudi saying “aaaand 420” right at the end) and I can almost guarantee a joint is being sparked up almost every time this song is being played.

In the final chapter, Cudi leaves the listener salivating for more, due to the premature ending on “We Aite”. This song has potential to be huge and an extra minute added on the track would have been perfectly sufficient. Nevertheless there is no song that should be skipped over, as every track lends its own originality to Scott Mescudi’s story.

The Legend of Mr. Rager is another exceptional way Kid Cudi relates to a generation of voiceless youth struggling to find our identities. He bravely speaks out on the pains of life, not sticking to the guns, girls and cash staples we are all sick and tired of already. Expecting this album to be like his first is wrong; Cudi’s musical style has evolved just as he has. There may be no looking back for Cudi, but I’m sure there are no regrets. As long as he continues to put out easily identifiable music there will always be an audience to listen. If there were to be one person to be the inspiration of our voiceless generation, that voice is Cudder.

– Signed Sincerely, Ignacio

Extra Special Treats:

For a Worst Guy review of Kanye’s new album click HERE

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