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last night's gig

Kid Cudi Nearly Explains Himself

Last night at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, Kid Cudi, Best Coast, and Vampire Weekend's Rostam Batmanglij got together to celebrate "All Summer," their Converse ad (by the way, what do you figure was the process behind getting Cudi to say "the women love the Chucks I'm wearing" in the song's first verse?). And seeing as it was his first New York appearance since a June 11 arrest for kicking an unidentified woman's apartment door off its hinges and possessing liquid cocaine (liquid cocaine!), Cudi felt the need to clear things up. But first, there were songs to be played.

Introducing his new track "Erase Me," a bewilderingly, enchantingly Eve 6–indebted pop-rock song with very little actual rapping (from the forthcoming Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager), Cudi said he'd "read some mixed reviews on my single, which is really funny to me" — and right around here is where a nasally British accent kicked in — "because most of the people that talk shit couldn't make a song if their life depended on it. I know that my real fans fuck with me when I do different shit." Wholesale dismissal of music critics? A petulant defense of an experimental second album? Fake accents?! We could listen to Cudi talk all day! And there'd be one more bit of excellent stage banter: With awesome set-closer "Pursuit of Happiness" dying down, Cudi finally touched upon the arrest, saying, "I know you guys were hearing some shit about me in the news, but I'm good now ... I just smoke weed. I know niggas die when they 27. I'm 26 now, but I promise I'll live till I'm old as shit."

Photo: C Flanigan/WireImage