2020 has been a long and frustrating year. But the one thing about this year that stands out is the albums that came out during the year. A lot of long-awaited albums were released to help get us through a tough year. The Cleveland-born rapper Kid Cudi, released his long-awaited Man on the Moon 3 album to add to that list. This album has been 10 years in the making. This album is the trilogy to the Man on the Moon album series. Fans and music critics have been waiting religiously for this third installment, and Kid Cudi did not disappoint this album. Kid Cudi is known to be a rapper who isn’t afraid to talk about his emotions and feelings, which isn’t really what some would think a rapper should be doing. His hit song, ‘Day N’ Nite’, on the first installment of Man on the Moon zoomed in and gave a lens into how Cudi was feeling lonely and dealt with emotional pain. This song was a testament to a whole generation of kids who dealt with mental health issues, and hearing someone talk about what you’re dealing with brings awareness and a community to belong to.
Man on the Moon 3 is a really unique trilogy to all of the Man on the Moon albums. This album dives into Kid Cudi’s feelings, but the album shows the listeners his growth since those past albums. From being a young rapper with all these feelings of anxiety and loneliness and pushing it down, to being a new person who acknowledges what and how he feels. “I didn’t think my father’s death really had an impact on me in the way that it did until I started writing about it. Oh, I guess being alone is an issue for me. Oh, I guess being depressed is an issue.” Cudi said in an interview with Apple Music. The album itself sonically picks up right where Man on the Moon 2 left off. This album has a lot of dark and really emotional production. You can hear it on the second track, Tequila Shots, along with Cudi’s signature hums sprinkled around on the track. This first track shows how Cudi feels these emotions, but this time is different because he won’t give in to them. He fights through them, trying to get back on track. Songs like Sad People and Mr. Solo Dolo III reverts to Cudi and his sadness and fighting through his emotion and what to do with them ultimately. However, the majority of this album isn’t all sad songs. Songs like the Void, Dive, Show out, Rockstart Knights, Another day sounds like triumphant songs. They sound like Cudi is aware of himself and how he feels and tries to understand them and fight through it.
Overall the album to me is an album based on growth. This album isn’t just sad, moody music; it’s a real person going through real emotions and change within himself. Skepta, Pop Smoke, and Trippie Redd are the only featured artists on this album. I feel like having an artist like Kid Cudi is major. It’s incredible to see an artist be so transparent emotionally to his fans and to see a black artist do that is amazing. Man on the Moon 3 is a journey through becoming okay with your imperfections and how to navigate them. In the last song, Lord, I Know, Cudi says (To Be Continued), so this isn’t the last of Kid Cudi.