I Was Wrong About Kids See Ghosts

Kids See Ghosts came out on June 8th, 2018 and my opinion on it has bothered me ever since. When this album was first played during the live stream I wasn’t a fan of the sound and style and immediately dismissed the album as something I wouldn’t enjoy. That night I stayed up for many hours with the album on repeat, especially the song “Reborn”. When I wrote my article I took the approach that the album was a project made by friends for the populous to enjoy as an experience rather than a traditional album. But, after numerous relistens, I came to the conclusion that I was wrong on three occasions.

My first fault was labeling the album as purely an experience when in reality, Kids See Ghosts stands as an album but also as an experience. Kid Cudi and Kanye West made this album to celebrate their years of friendship and wanted to share this musical masterpiece with us, the fans. By doing so, they invoked the true power of friendship in their work and created a way in which the album can be taken as an experience, an experience of true friendship. This album is full of emotions that the two men share throughout each song. Songs like “Freeee” detail being free of your demons while Reborn showcases becoming someone new, free of demons and sins of the past. These two songs flow perfectly together as do all of the songs on this album. Emotions take full control when it comes to lyricism and it should be known that both Kanye West and Kid Cudi put their all into their words and delivery.

My next fault was saying that “Freeee (Ghost Town Pt.2)” should’ve been left off the album because of the “Ghost Town” name. After multiple listens, this song has become one of my favorite songs on the album and potentially of 2018. The whole idea of losing your demons and moving on is a strong message that I’m sure I and many others could relate to. I thoroughly enjoy this song and have learned to ignore the “Ghost Town” title because I still believe it’s better off without it.

My final mistake was on my 2018 Best Albums List when I gave Jay Rock’s Redemption the number one slot on my list. I gave Kids See Ghosts the number three spot while Dance Gavin Dance took second place. I firmly believe that after listening to these three albums many times, Kids See Ghosts is my album of the year. Jay Rock did a great job on Redemption but I just do not see myself listening to this album as often as I do Kids See Ghosts. If I were to amend the list, Kids See Ghosts is my number one spot with Dance Gavin Dance taking second still, and Jay Rock in third. I must give it to Kanye West and Kid Cudi for not only being my two favorite artists of all time but also making one of my favorite albums of all time and especially of 2018.

I intend to use my experience with Kids See Ghosts as an opportunity to learn from my mistakes. Never again will I write something off because I didn’t enjoy it at first but rather give it time and give it a fair retry. Kids See Ghosts has taught me a lot about feelings and humanity and I, in turn, wish to keep these lessons close as I move forward through life.

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Kids See Ghosts Review

As the Cruel Summer continues, I decided to turn this week’s planned 3×3 Monday into yet another Kanye West-related album review. Next Monday should be the return to 3×3 Monday’s as I have a lot of different genres and songs to share. Here’s my track by track review of the new Kid Cudi and Kanye West album titled Kids See Ghosts.

Feel the Love

Kids See Ghosts starts off explosively with the opening song “Feel the Love”. “Feel the Love” begins with a clever and enjoyable introduction from Pusha-T which then evolves into Kanye West seemingly channeling his inner Desiigner combined with the “scoopty woop” vibes from “Lift Yourself” to create a unique and loud chorus to challenge Kid Cudi’s simple and melodic chorus. This song is without a doubt a hell of a way to introduce one of the most anticipated albums of all time. “Feel the Love” seems like the best way to set the youthful and personal tone that this album will take throughout its seven-song course. But the hype doesn’t stop here as it’s simply building up to another great song which is “Fire”.

Fire

If “Feel the Love” was a precursor to the hype levels of Kids See Ghosts, “Fire” subsequently is ultimately the payoff of this buildup. The song features both Kid Cudi and Kanye West reverting to their roots to deliver some serious and suave rhymes accompanied by a simple yet fun beat. Since both started off as rappers and have both gone on to invent and perfect their own sound, this return to form is beautiful. With Kid Cudi doing his usual chorus routine, “Fire” is inevitably what the name suggests. This is one of my favorite songs of this year especially due in part to the nostalgia I get when hearing my idols in their purest form once more.

4th Dimension

If “Fire” was any indication, Kid Cudi, and Kanye West once again continue this back-to-basics pattern into their next song “4th Dimension”. This song features a gospel drum beat over a sample from a Louis Prima’s song “What Will Santa Claus Say”. “4th Dimension” is seemingly a timeless classic as 1936 meets 2018 with the help of Kanye West’s immaculate sampling techniques. The powerhouse duo glides over the beat to deliver yet another memorable song on Kids See Ghosts. Kanye West once again displays that sampling can give life to songs that people otherwise wouldn’t know. This creativity is definitely a highlight of this 23-minute project.

Freeee

Unfortunately, if I had to pick my least favorite song from Kids See Ghosts, it would have to be “Freeee”. While this song is still great on its own, it’s the one song I find myself listening to the least out of the seven. “Freeee” is technically a sequel to “Ghost Town” from Ye, however, it fails to live up to the extraordinary sound and feeling that came from the original. With yet another Ty Dolla $ign feature, Kids See Ghosts could be better off without “Freeee”. I personally believe “Ghost Town” and “Freeee” should’ve been switched but regardless, it’s still a song to find enjoyment in.

Reborn

“Reborn” has got to be the best song on this album hands down. Taking Kid Cudi’s ability to slay any chorus combined with the sincere and down-to-Earth Kanye West we got from Ye is simply a recipe for greatness. Kid Cudi and Kanye West deliver perhaps their best song together of all time with “Reborn”. The message is powerful as Kid Cudi reminds us all to keep moving forward in our search for eternal peace and happiness that we all seek to find in life. This deep message combined with a catchy and dreamy beat is truly the best part of Kids See Ghosts. This constant suggestion to keep moving forward is something that has and surely will stick with me for the rest of my life. This song brings a tear to my eye as it allows me to see the possibilities that life has to offer. Even when life is at it’s absolute worst, it’s important to keep moving forward.

Kids See Ghosts

After the masterpiece that is “Reborn” we enter the final two songs of Kids See Ghosts. With a chorus by Mos Def/Yasiin Bey, the duo decide to go off on their second to last song. The self-titled song is well deserving of the name especially when you take into consideration the relaxed first verse from Kid Cudi that leisurely transitions into an amazing verse by Kanye West who then raps over the smooth beat. This song is very slick and mellow as each of the three rappers lend their voice to increase the level of suave that they have to offer on this track. The highlight of this song has to be the bridge by Yasiin Bey.

Civilization without society
Power and wealth with nobility
Stability without stasis
Places and spaces
Civilization without society
Power and wealth with nobility
Stability without stasis
Spaces and places

With all things considered, this song is perhaps the smoothest and most calm song on this album, which is absolutely refreshing. After this song ends we start the beginning of the end of Kids See Ghosts.

Cudi Montage

“Cudi Montage” is disputably Kid Cudi at his best. While this song is about the rising rates of violence and crime in the world, it also serves as a reminder that we can all be “saved”. With Kanye West detailing the unfortunate and all too real cases of violence in America and around the world, we’re offered refuge by Kid Cudi, Kanye West, and Mr. Hudson in the chorus. Their chorus is about staying strong while asking for forgiveness and assistance when it comes to beating the odds in their lives. This touching ending to an amazing album is a reminder that we can all beat the odds and be better people if we actively apply ourselves and seek out the positive people in the world. As I stated in my article about Kids See Ghosts, this album is ultimately about the friendship between Kid Cudi and Kanye West. Their friendship is the ideal example of the transcendental relationship we all seek to have with others in life. “Cudi Montage” ends the story of Kids See Ghosts on a positive and uplifting note that shows friendship and love will always overcome hate and adversity in life.

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Kids See Ghosts

I’ve waited eight years for this moment, yet was it really worth the hype and wait? Being a longtime Kanye West fan has had its ups and downs. However, at the end of the day, him and Kid Cudi are my two biggest inspirations and all-time favorite musicians. Kids See Ghosts, by all means, should be my favorite album of all time then right? Yet, it’s not. It’s not even in my top five. It’s not my favorite Kanye West nor favorite Kid Cudi album. What it is, however, is an experience and a testament to the idea of friendship. Kid Cudi and Kanye West have been friends for around a decade now ever since Kanye West saw the potential in a young Scott Mescudi and decided to bring him to his label G.O.O.D. Music in 2008. This friendship and comradery is the true idea behind Kids See Ghosts.

Kid Cudi and Kanye West have had an obvious bond throughout their music careers especially on Kanye West’s albums. Five out of eight of Kanye West’s albums feature Kid Cudi. Most of these songs end up being my favorites of the album. Songs such as “Waves” and “Ghost Town” are some of my favorite songs of all time. So why isn’t Kids See Ghosts, an album that’s purely Kid Cudi and Kanye West, not my favorite album of all time? Simply put, this album isn’t for the fans as much as it is for them.

My longest friendship is currently eight, almost nine years long and the one thing I’ve learned from this friendship is that differences will exist. We take opposing sides on almost everything, yet at the end of the day, we agree on what’s important and what needs to be attended to. This same rule goes for Kid Cudi and Kanye West.
Kid Cudi and Kanye West haven’t had the best relationship with constant falling outs and feuds seemingly occurring every few years, yet one thing is guaranteed: Kid Cudi will always appear on Kanye West’s albums.

This friendship is genuine and compassionate, to say the least. At the end of the day, these two rap legends are best friends, and more importantly brothers. So it is inevitably up to Kids See Ghosts to translate this connection into music form. And that’s exactly what Kids See Ghosts does at the end of the day. I don’t love this album because it’s my two favorite musicians making amazing songs, I love this album because it’s my two favorite musicians working together on what brought them together in the first place. Kids See Ghosts is a nod to the years of success, fighting, and association that the two have gone through in the past decade.

Kids See Ghosts is at it’s best when they each have their moment to display the chemistry between each other. Kid Cudi’s soulful hums and singing compliment Kanye West’s witty lyricism, while Kanye West’s ability to take the spotlight allow Kid Cudi to shine on the hooks and chorus to create a harmonious sound.
This album is more than just friendship, it’s about love. This love between friends cannot be broken and this album only further solidifies this claim. Just like my relationship with my friend, we always set our differences aside when it’s essential. We drop our opinions and ideologies in order to find common ground and allow our minds to see the other person’s point of view. This method is exactly what makes Kids See Ghosts work. By thinking that Kids See Ghosts is a thematic sequel to Ye, it allows for a clear and concise conclusion to the narrative of this new version of Kanye West.

Ye introduced us to a transformed Kanye West, a man of friends, family, and happiness. By turning the negatives in his life into positives, Kanye West successfully transitioned into becoming a happy and less-troubled man. However, he couldn’t have done it without Kid Cudi on “Ghost Town”. If we follow this theme into Kids See Ghosts we realize that Kid Cudi and Kanye West have always been there for each other whether it’s Kid Cudi being a good moral support and collaborator with Kanye West to Kanye West putting Kid Cudi on the map, both have been there for each other.

This is why Kids See Ghosts is an experience rather than an album in my opinion. This friendship is what the world needs to see in a world full of hate and anger. Positives and negatives are associated with everything in life, however, it’s crucial we highlight the good over the bad and that’s exactly what these songs do. Both of these legends are growing older and wiser each year but one thing is for sure: Kanye West will always feature Kid Cudi on his album no matter what. That’s what real friends do.

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