WZRD: WZRD

by Christian Redl

WZRD: WZRD

Rating: 3/5

Song To Watch Out For: Teleport 2 Me, Jamie

I know what you’re saying to yourself; “Who in God’s name is WZRD?” Well, up until a week ago I would have said the same thing. Believe it or not, WZRD was started by rap icon Kid CuDi. Everyone –including his record company–has been anticipating CuDi to make Man On The Moon III, his latest in the saga of albums recently produced, but instead, CuDi has been secretly working on this experimental side project, venturing into the sounds and ideals of Rock n’ Roll.

Produced with co-artist Dot Da Genius, who together laid down the track, “Day n’ Nite,” the duo have bent the rules on artist identity and characteristics.

This is not the first time we have seen a rapper switch up his game and join the Rock front, most notably ‘Lil Wayne. Sadly, Weezy’s fans and critics were left wanting. Kid CuDi, on the other hand, delivers a surprisingly well-constructed album demonstrating the versatility of Rock.

The album kicks off with “Arrival,” an ambient rock tune that slowly builds with string accompaniment, preparing the listener for a brand new experience. The rest of the album sticks with this slow-rock vibe, rarely venturing into heavier forms of Rock. Though creative, the hip-hop qualities of the drums make the record sound similar to what Drake has laid down on his most recent album.

“Efflictim” is WZRD’s take on Indie acoustics, with Kid CuDi’s vocals leading the melody. Needless to say, he is not well known for his vocals, and it will remain that way. But on “Teleport 2 Me, Jamie,” CuDi’s vocals are more suited to the song, being slightly reverbed, making it echoed and sound more whimsical. This track is everything WZRD attempted to achieve with this album, and is undoubtedly an anthem for today’s generation. The lyrics are relatable, the melody is catchy, and there’s an honesty in the song that is rare in pop artist’s works lately.

The most surprising track, however, is the classic Lead Belly blues song, “Where Did You Sleep Last Night?” Now, granted Kid CuDi’s voice is not suited for the blues, it is still impressive to see a platinum artist expose so many to such an unknown genre. The last time anyone has heard this song was when Nirvana gave a haunting acoustic performance live on MTV back in the early 1990’s, and this hip-hop rendition can hold its head high in comparison.