Words About Music
Kid Cudi “Satellite Flight: The Journey to Mother Moon”
Kid Cudi. There are very few names that inspire such an emotional reaction in the hip-hop community as Kid Cudi. The Kanye protege started off with promise with the release of his mixtape “A Kid Named Cudi” and his first two albums “Man on the Moon” and “Man on the Moon II.” Cudi’s moody, hazy hip-hop definitely struck a chord in hip-hop fans and he was on his way to becoming something of a superstar. Then, of course, he released what many speculated would be his best album until it actually came out. His third album, “Indicud,” is probably his attempt at a “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.” The poorly-produced engineer’s nightmare is probably one of the worst contemporary hip-hop albums ever released and a colossal failure on all fronts. With that behind him, he’s attempting something of a recovery with a surprise 10-song LP that is his most experimental yet. “Satellite Flight: The Journey to Mother Moon” was planned as an EP, but apparently Cudi got a stroke of inspiration in the studio and went for an album with roughly the same run time as “Yeezus” to serve as a precursor to the forthcoming “Man on the Moon III.”
Unfortunately for Cudi, this album will probably be forgotten about by the time “Man on the Moon III” comes out. Fortunately, it’s his best release in years. Sure, it feels a bit unfinished and is for the most part not a totally incredible album. But coming back from “Indicud” with a short surprise album was probably the best thing Cudi could’ve done instead of having his fans wait around for “Man on the Moon III.” This surprise album is about 40 minutes long and probably features some more instrumental music than the average Kid Cudi super-fan is maybe used to. And the problem with me isn’t that Cudi opted to use more instrumental music, it’s that the instrumentals on here aren’t that interesting all the time. And if they do happen to be interesting then they just go on for much longer than necessary.
A common complaint about Cudi’s music is also his singing voice. Recently Cudi has taken to doing more singing than some people prefer, though to be perfectly honest I prefer Cudi’s singing to his rapping. He’s not the best singer in the world but I do like his timbre and I feel like it usually matches up well with the beats he opts to use. “Satellite Flight” is no exception as his singing is much more welcomed here than the rapping he does.
Maybe the fact that I’m not a huge Kid Cudi has something to do with the fact that I didn’t see this album as anything too entirely special like some people (namely Jaden Smith) did. However, I will say that this is a vast improvement on “Indicud” and has me looking forward to “Man on the Moon III” a lot more than I thought I would. Sure there are some songs that feel uneventful and unnecessary and maybe this thing would’ve worked better as a 6-song EP, but I don’t hate what I’m listening to. And that’s saying a lot.
SCORE – 6.3
FAVORITE TRACKS – Satellite Flight, Copernicus Landing, Balmain Jeans, Internal Bleeding, Return of the Moon Man