Fans of Kid Cudi's breakthrough track, Day 'N' Nite, and its ubiquitous Crookers remix, take note: this debut studio effort is more ambitious song cycle than club bangers album.
It details one night in the life of the introspective Brooklyn-via-Cleveland stoner rapper, with spacey and futuristic beats to match. Oddly enough, its MGMT-assisted psychedelics, trippy cover art and mid-album poetry recall the Moody Blues' Days Of Future Passed more than anything else.
But Cudi's earnest, straightforward raps don't quite match the sonic explorations. He has few punchlines, and occasionally drifts dangerously into emo-rap. Half-sung half-baked choruses work with the cool backdrops, but not well enough to be repeated this many times.
Still, Cudi deserves credit for such an audacious high-concept debut. It falls a bit flat, but at least it falls forward.
Top track: Pursuit Of Happiness