Kid Cudi tweeted last June that his next release, Indicud, would be his own version of Dr. Dre’s 2001. Sounds like it’d be quite the undertaking, right? Well it seems Cudi forgot when he started this project that, unlike Dre, he’s a really weird dude.
Indicud opens up with a heavy instrumental track titled “The Resurrection of Scott Mecudi” that sounds like it’s from a dubstep-infused Terminator 2: Judgement Day score. The album transitions into “Unfuckwittable,” with a sample of Macaulay Culkin’s horrifying character from The Good Son saying, “Once you realize you can do anything, you’re free. You could fly.” Buckle your seatbelts, hip-hop heads, the man on the moon is back.
Critics have hit Cudi hard for the Dre comment, but it’s his version of 2001, not 2001. There aren’t any bangin’ piano tracks to drive around to, because Cudi would rather invite some friends over, smoke a bunch of weed and chill out or maybe just cry – let’s face it, he’s the most emo rapper in the game. He doesn’t stack up against other top producers in the industry right now, and tackling the production of an entire album might’ve been a little too much for him, but he did it. It may not be perfect, but Indicud is 100 percent his.
“Just What I Am” serves as the typical stoner anthem that you’ve come to expect from Cudi. A roomy beat with intergalactic synths and a light and tight snare while Cudi sings, “I wanna get high y’all.” It’s really the tightest ode to the ganja released recently.
Indicud has a little bit of everything. “Young Lady” has such a smooth atmospheric feel and uses a Father John Misty sample for the hook, which feels like it was meant for this song. “Immortal” is the one typical “I love Kid Cudi because he’s sad and so am I” track, so keep that one to yourself. The rest of the album is perfect to bump in the car while you’re with the crew and smoking hand-rolled cigarettes containing strictly tobacco. “Beez” easily takes the top-track spot because the legendary RZA jumps in with a flow that could only come from a Wu-Tang Clan veteran. “I don’t write rap songs, grasshopper / I write sceneries,” he raps in the first verse. No one knows what that actually means, but it sounds sick with some stereo headphones on.
A lot of rap fans have a love-hate relationship with Cudi. On one hand, he creates some of the catchiest hooks, rivaling the late and great Nate Dogg. On the other, he has written songs about having existential crises when he wakes up alone in the middle of the night. Cudi might not be 9th Wonder, but the production is imaginative and he’s created some complex hip-hop soundscapes. If you love Cudi, you’ll love Indicud. If you don’t, it’ll be a stretch, but I’d still take the time to check it out. It’s experimental, and if anything, it’ll add a little something different to your playlist.