Kid Cudi is a fascinating rapper, claimed by the backpackers for his work with Kanye West on 808s & HEARTBREAK but equally loved by the mash-up club kids who went ape for his "Day N Nite" single, especially in its nu-disco remix from Crookers. His debut album was deep in the category of "much anticipated" as soon as it was announced, but when the promised game changer finally arrived, it became obvious that Cudi had already changed the game. With its narration from Common and a track list broken into five "acts," MAN ON THE MOON: THE END OF DAY is almost as conceptual as its name implies, kicking off with a spaced-out slow roller coated in strings while Cudi states "Welcome, you're in my dream now." What follows is Pink Floyd-styled story where the real world pain of "Soundtrack 2 My Life" mutates into sci-fi fantasies from the dark side of the moon. Along the way, brilliant samples--like a bit of OMD's esoteric album DAZZLE SHIPS--and innovative sounds from Cudi and special guests Emile, Ratatat, and MGMT slowly shuffle the listener through the man's spliff-fueled exploration of space. This first official release is a soul searcher and may require more patience than your everyday debut. Still, the chilly, complicated MAN ON THE MOON perfects the futuristic bleak-beat hip-hop Kanye purposed a year earlier, and rewards the listener with every tripped-out return.
Rolling Stone (p.96) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "The music is engrossing and Cudi's angst genuine..."
Spin (p.88) - "Scott Ramon Seguro Mescudi is a quirky, singing rapper with a nice, effortless stoner drawl....He's more concerned with melody and emotion than lyrical terror."
Entertainment Weekly (p.129) - "Cudi turns out to be that rarest of rap phenomena: a hyped upstart who really does represent a promising new phase in the genre's evolution." -- Grade: A-
Entertainment Weekly (p.102) - Included in Entertainment Weekly's 'The Best Albums of 2009' -- "Exposing his own ambitions and anxieties over trippy beats one moment, collaborating with left-fielders like indie-rock bands Ratatat and MGMT the next..."
Billboard (p.52) - "The rapper's delivery is confident in a poetic and artful way, channeled through a theatrical set of songs..."
Q (Magazine) (p.120) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "'Pursuit Of Happiness,' a psychedelic wash of piano riffs and lush harmonies courtesy of MGMT, has shades of The Flaming Lips."