Complex: The 50 Best Rap Album Covers of the Past 5 Years
32. Kid Cudi, Indicud
Release date: April 16, 2013
Photography: Nabil Elderkin
Art direction: Scott “Kid Cudi” Mescudi
Graphic design: Scott “Kid Cudi” Mescudi
Labels: Wicked Awesome, GOOD, Republic
Kid Cudi’s journey has been a long one, filled with both struggle and success. His first two album covers offer more direct representations of their respective bodies of work and those periods in his life. On Man on the Moon: The End of the Day, the cover features Cudi’s face superimposed onto the side of the moon, representing the dreamlike, outsidery feel of the album. On Man on the Moon: The Legend of Mr. Rager, Cudi looks dejected, head down and whiskey glass in hand, representing the darker reality he was going through. On Indicud, the cover is more abstract and representative of things that cannot be translated as easily, and that’s the point.
The Indicud cover, which exists in a baroque frame, was designed by Kid Cudi himself. Cudi says, “I create art, so it will be presented as such.” The specific use of baroque style frames was no stretch—the baroque period was categorized by the use of detail to tell dramatic and emotional stories.
The inside of the frame represents the movement and cinematic quality of not only Cudi’s work but also Cudi himself. The more abstract nature of this cover resembles the album, a piece of work that is more chaotic yet focused than some of Cudi’s previous releases. The same way a fire is powerful and unpredictable, so is Indicud, but at the same time, the entire work exists within a certain, bright world enclosed by the frame. —Austin Weatherly