Kid Cudi's Last Minute Save

Mar. 19, 2009
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ďKid Cudi is a no show,Ē a stagehand announced at exactly 1 a.m., the scheduled start time for Kid Cudiís set. Within moments the houselights brightened and the crowd realized he wasnít joking. Disillusioned and grumbling, they made a mass exodus toward the exit. The first revelers had just left when none other but Kid Cudi walked in through the venueís front door in brisk stride, waving the crowd back toward the stage. It was like a scene from a movie; the rapperís fashionably late entrance couldnít have been better timed.

ďSorry Iím late,Ē Cudi apologized as he hopped over a bar and onto the stage, his DJ racing to set up his equipment. ďI had a Peter Parker Spider Man 2 moment. You know how Spider Man didnít want to be Spider Man no more? I was feeling that way.Ē

It was an odd explanation for being four minutes tardy if there ever was one. Itís going to be a long, miserable life for the laid-back rapper if heís already questioning a career in musiche hasnít even released a full-length album yet, but stardom seems imminent. His breakthrough underground single, ďDay Ní Nite,Ē newly fitted with a beautiful video, is on the brink of becoming his breakthrough commercial single. With its cool, hypnotic tone, the song is like little else on the radio (which is why some stations have taken to airing a busy, Top 40-friendly remix of the song that strips away all nuance; but thatís radio for you).

Cudiís set drew mostly from his inspired but uneven A Kid Named Cudi mixtape, and even the mixís more blasť songs sounded striking live. With Cudiís emphasis on mellowed-out but soulful choruses, every song becomes an easy sing-along. If Cudiís debut can capture the effortless charisma of his stage show on record, he could have a real masterpiece on the horizon.

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