Daily Californian Arts Awards: Music of 2016

Music in 2016 was, in one word, overwhelming. It was tumultuous. Life collided with death, in more ways than one. Its forebears — David Bowie, Phife Dawg, Prince, Leonard Cohen and, most recently, George Michael — passed on to the next life. Some left behind swan songs, both posthumous and preceding
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Kid Cudi Passion, Pain and Demon Slayin' | Republic Records Grade: B+

Kid Cudi returns with some ‘Demon Slayin’

Kid Cudi hasn’t had the most successful set of years. After breaking out with his much heralded Man on the Moon: The End of Day and Man on the Moon: Legend of Mr. Rager, Cudi quit smoking marijuana and had a kid — both massive milestones for anybody. Yet, musically, Cudi’s public good
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The Weeknd Starboy | XO/Republic Records Grade: D

The Weeknd falls down rabbit hole with ‘Starboy’

By trying to fix something that wasn’t broken, The Weeknd, real name Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, breaks it all with Starboy — our hearts, our ears and his soul. Somewhere amid the 18 tracks, we lose The Weeknd, and The Weeknd loses us. But rather than heading off into the elusive darkness
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