Title: KIDS SEE GHOSTS
Artist: KIDS SEE GHOSTS
Label: G.O.O.D / Def Jam
Genre: Hip Hop
Released: 08 June 2018
KIDS SEE GHOSTS
KIDS SEE GHOSTS
"I had my issues, ain't that much I could do
But, peace is something that starts with me, with me
At times, wonder my purpose
Easy then to feel worthless
But, peace is something that starts with me"
In 2018 Kanye West helped produce five albums released over the time span of only five weeks. DAYTONA by Pusha T, his own self titled project ye, Teyana Taylor’s K.T.S.E, Nas’ NASIR, and a self-titled collaborative effort between himself and Kid Cudi under the alias KIDS SEE GHOSTS.
The latter of these was my favourite of the five projects, with KIDS SEE GHOSTS shining as an incredibly tight, albeit brief record, clocking in at only 23 minutes across 7 songs. This album is so short and sweet that you literally have no excuse not to listen to it. Go do it now. I don’t even care if you’ve already heard it, go listen to it again. You can't really go wrong. This thing is great.
And the reason KIDS SEE GHOSTS is this great is Kanye and Cudi’s collaboration. Neither of them are strangers to drama on social media, so considering the very public fallout they had in the years leading up to this album’s release, the announcement of a collaboration between the two was surprising, but promising. Especially as the two have had a great track record working together. Some of their best tracks have come from each other’s creative influence and input. Songs such as Gorgeous, Welcome to Heartbreak, Erase me, and Father Stretch My Hands Pt. 1. This album is no exception. In fact, KIDS SEE GHOSTS is the culmination of everything that makes these two artists some of the best among their contemporaries.
The album starts with Feel the Love, which immediately sets the mood for the rest of the record - an incredible amount of fun. Cudi comes straight in with some of the best singing he’s shown in his entire career. There's a great feature from Pusha-T, and then out of nowhere comes Kanye with the verse of the year.
The absolute madman.
I just can't get over how fun this opening song is. On top of that, it's already showing off some amazing production, as well as Cudi’s vocal redemption after his extremely questionable attempt at making a rock album with his 2015 Speedin’ Bullet 2 Heaven.
For the most part, this album holds this consistency in quality from start to finish. It really doesn’t give itself enough time to drag at any point, which is obviously great, however it's also my main criticism of the record. Almost all these songs, as amazing as they are, are so short. They feel like taster tracks. They’re absolutely delicious tasters, but they just make me want a full course meal of a Kanye/Cudi collaboration. I would gladly hear another two minutes of 4th dimension, or another verse of Fire (which is, by the way, exactly as the name suggests). West even has a line at the end of 4th Dimension where he says to Cudi:
“Just do that and then let the music do somethin', and then do that again, that'd be enough for a record
I mean, you only want two and a half minutes if you can get it, you know, three minutes max—"
But the only song that feels like it's reached its full potential on the album is Reborn, which is five and a half minutes long.
This might be sounding a bit negative, especially for an album I’m choosing to rate so highly, but I really do love all these songs so much, I just feel like with a little more content, this album could be even better. Then again, it's better to be brief than outstay your welcome, so either way I’m extremely impressed with how incredibly tight this album manages to be from start to finish. It takes the best aspects of Kanye and Cudi's music and refines them into a 23 minute piece of art that manages to showcase the two artist’s strengths beautifully. The lyrics reflect this as well, with the album delving into themes of overcoming issues with mental health, as well as their love and respect for each other.
Its honestly beautiful to see these two lift each other up for 23 minutes straight: talking about being reborn out of some of the darkest periods of their lives through both self-love and mutual support. This album is a celebration of these two artists recognising their strengths together in both collaboration and friendship, and it's an incredibly heartfelt and entertaining listen.
KIDS SEE GHOSTS is excellent. If you still haven't heard this, it's about as fun of a time as you're going to get in 23 minutes. Enjoy it.
Reviewed by Layton Bryce