SPIN Reviews MOTM II: The Legend of Mr. Rager

In the upcoming issue of SPIN Magazine they review Cudi’s forthcoming album “Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager” giving it a rating of 8/10. The review says the sequel to his debut album is “a revelation, boldly reshaping Cudi’s sound”. Production includes work from Emile, Plain Pat, Chuck Inglish (Cool Kids), Jim Jonson, Diplo and more. Hit the jump to read the full review.

Shouts to CaCHooKa Man man for the scans and typed up review.

Kid Cudi is one fucked-up dude. This is not Web-lurking speculation. It’s been the rapper’s ongoing, on-the-record confession since he proclaimed, almost jauntily, “I’m looking for a substance to drown in,” on the first song, “Down & Out,” on his first mixtape, 2008’s stoner picaresque A Kid Named Cudi. Last year’s ambitious, if unfocused, official debut, Man on the Moon: The End of Day, reeled with references to “night terrors,” compulsive drug use, and his deceased father. “A happy ending would be slitting my throat,” he mused.

Yet Cudi expresses this heavy-hearted disarray with a brashly naive yearning. It’s as if admitting his flaws is his creative passkey, like horny solipsism is for, say, John Updike or Snoop Dogg. And trying to frame that lyrical fucked-upness so it’s not trite or pathetic pushes his music into intriguingly skewed places (the laconic dance-club drift of “Day ‘N’ Nite”). Like Drake and benefactor/collaborator Kanye West, Cudi works a rapping/singing hybrid that prizes raw emotion. But he shies from their will to power; Beck’s waggish melancholy and shrugging disregard for genre is a closer fit.

That said, Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager, the sequel to The End of Day, is a revelation, boldly reshaping Cudi’s sound—with vivid production by Emile, Plain Pat, the Cool Kids’ Chuck Inglish, Jim Jonsin, Diplo, and others. The album’s narrative (yes, there is one this time, and it mercifully does not involve a Biography Channel voice- over by Common!) follows an idealistic artist who gets trapped in hip-hop’s make-it-rain imaginarium and emerges a predictably stupefied casualty. His cautionary journey takes the music in a makeshift ’90s-alt-rock direction, jacked up on jittery beats that eerily mirror the rush and crash of someone who’s been given way too much access to way too much ass. The dizzy friction between rap’s grasping for control and rock’s desire to lose it entirely give Cudi’s confessions a dicey, volatile edge.

On album opener “Horizon,” he adopts the role of semi-reliable narrator (as if): “Hello, how is everyone doing?” he offers over a keyboard twinkle; but when he claims “I’m your big brother” on “Revofev,” it’s got an ominous tinge, as strings crescendo, percussion rattles, and psych guitar lurches. “Where will you be for the revolution?” he asks, apropos of, well, the type of shit you say when you’re high on coke trying to be meaningful. By the filmic swirl of “Don’t Play This Song,” he’s gone, double-time spitting about drugs, predatory girls, his mom. “Be careful,” a female chorus implores.

“Marijuana” grows eerier, as he forcefully articulates why he needs to be stoned to balance the craziness in his head, against a keytar-ish blare and chattering drums. Darkness creeps on “Groovin’,” “Mojo So Dope,” “Wildin’ Cuz I’m Young,” and “Maniac” (featuring Cage, playing the psychotic fool), as Cudi gets punchier the more he parties.

“Mr. Rager,” a would-be arena anthem with a teasing guitar riff that never ascends, is the ingenious anticlimax. Cudi singsongs to himself—the wayward title character—entreating, “Tell me where you’re going … when will the fantasy end?” He gently envies the birds just “singin’, flyin’ around.” And with good reason, considering the fiendishness haunting him elsewhere. Mary J. Blige wails, “Don’t you worry,” on the outro, but Cudi’s off again, still struggling to heed his own album’s advice.

Confirmed tracks as of right now:
Horizon
REVOFEV
Erase Me (Feat. Kanye West)
Marijuana
Groovin’
Mojo So Dope
Wildin’ Cuz I’m Young (Feat. Kanye West)
Trapped In My Mind
Maniac (Feat. Cage)
Don’t Play This Song
Ghost
Mr. Rager

Share This Post

  • cudi’s_naturalbeauty

    Damn i really need to hear this album

  • DaviddddR

    Dope article. 8/10 is pretty damn good for SPIN.

  • luis93bx

    hey dp, how do you know deep sleep is goin to be on motm2?

  • Kyle

    Wow so there is only 6 songs that havent been heard on this album. They better be damn good.

  • Jalisa

    Cnt Wait !

  • Pingback: Spin Previews Cudi’s Upcoming Album()

  • GeneralCudderfan

    omg this is amazing

  • http://www.dp-studios.net DP

    My bad, I don’t know that. For some reason I thought it was in the article.

  • luis93bx

    O, Hopefully it is though, album is gonna be great

  • b

    @kyle
    cudi said hes got at least 18 tracks on it already in a recent interview w/ complex so there should be more than 6 that dont leak

  • frankie ruiz

    Kid Cudi is the Jimi Hendrix of the 21st Century

  • MrSoloDolo

    THANK U MR.RAGER THERE IS A GOD!!!!!

  • Lifted17

    50 days till Rager…..YAAAAAAAAA

  • Al

    Nice Review can’t wait.
    But whats up with all the white kids in the illustrations?
    Couldn’t be more naive.

  • big balls bulldog

    @Frankie ruiz: uhh no

  • Fredy Flores

    Awesome man on the moon Mmm

  • Drewskis

    OMG!!! I HAVE TO LISTEN TO THIS ALBUM RIGHT NOW!!!!! I CANT WAIT MUCH LONGERRRRR AHHHHHHHH!!!!!!! FUCKKKK I WANT IT!!!!

  • heff44x

    the song Marijuana. is going to be soo deap i fucken wait for this thing to drop!

  • clevelandman

    cudi other interview say there is 18 songs and counting thats on the album thats not all of them and wylin cause im young and mojo so dope he released on purpose i dont think there going to be on the album mr.rager was leaked and REVOFEV he released on his on plus he said chip tha ripper and cee lo green and glc amd Mary J. Blige and ohters are goin to be on it so thats not the offical list

  • Unknown

    I want to hear “don’t play this song”.

  • Kyle

    yeah my bad i read this article before the complex interview. Thats awesome there is gonna be 18 songs. i cant wait.

  • BigJared14

    Everyone, don’t forget about Cudder’s album with Dot Da Genius! He said it will drop around the same time as MOTM2. So regardless of how many more songs will be on MOTM2, we will all have enough Cudi to be satisfied for a good amount of time!

  • LoriGreen

    This album will be the first thing I’ll buy with my own money. I’m proud.

  • Ri—-ooooo

    Really hoping for Ratatat productions.
    But, songs like Mr. Rager are really great already!

  • http://twitter.com/ddconyers d.conyers

    i cannot respect the rating because of the drake comparison.the writer loses all credibility therefore his rating is invalid.

  • earthlinginvadingmars

    where’s Snoop Dogg? Pharrell? Cee-Lo? Ratatat? MGMT? Lupe Fiasco? we’re missing some people here, man

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