After I heard Kid Cudi’s first album, “Man on the Moon I: The End of Day,” I knew his second album would have big shoes to fill. “Man on the Moon II: the Legend of Mr. Rager” comes close, but needs two pairs of socks to fill the shoes.
Listening to “Moon I” all the way through was my first great album experience. Each track fed off the one before it and led to the one after it. It worked as a whole as well as on a song-by-song basis.
So, I met the second album with high anticipation. I like most of the songs, and the ones I didn’t like much at first are growing on me.
But unlike the first album, each track is totally independent of the ones before and after it. Yes, this is typical of many albums, but I expected the same kind of holistic experience I got from the first album, and I was disappointed.
“Moon I” was all about Kid Cudi’s dreams and nightmares; it was a surreal journey through Kid Cudi’s subconscious. “Moon II” comes back to reality. A lot of the songs are about his struggle with addiction to cocaine and marijuana.
“I started doing cocaine to get through interviews,” Cudi said in an interview on infamousrealtalk.wordpress.com. “Doing [cocaine] I was able to get through the day, but then I would smoke weed to calm me down … I never thought it was a problem, but I was definitely high-fiving death a couple of times.”
The addiction is evident in many of the tracks and makes for some passionate songs. “Marijuana” and “Ashin Kusher” are odes to pot, with lines like “pretty green bud all in my blood.” “The Mood,” on the other hand, gets inside Kid Cudi’s head when he’s on cocaine. “Erase Me,” a collaboration with Kanye West, is a lighter catchy song that doesn’t happen to be about drugs.
Let’s hope that on his next album, Kid Cudi’s feet grow a little more.