by Andrew Katsiris
When you hear the words “under pressure,” the first thing that may pop into your head is the catchy bass riffs, the rhythmic clap/snap combination, and Freddie Mercury’s vocals from the class Queen and David Bowie record. However, October 2014 brought with it a new hip-hop album that’s better than pumpkin-spiced lattes. Twenty-four year old Maryland rapper, Logic, is the “young Sinatra” behind said album.
Released under Def Jam Records, his debut album did not disappoint the large fan base Logic had acquired in the underground rap scene. And he is not new to the pressure, release, and reception of feature-length tracks; with four mixtapes under his belt, Logic had the confidence to drop a twelve-track album, including a fifteen-track deluxe edition. While the norm for many artists in modern hip-hop would be to have many other artists featured on their songs, Under Pressure lacked any kind of feature, save for the deluxe edition (Childish Gambino featured on “Driving Miss Daisy,” Big Sean featured on “Alright”). Without any features, he had the freedom to show off his skills without any comparisons. In his tenth album track, “Nikki,” he seemingly raps about a complicated, love/hate relationship with a girl, but reveals at the end that Nikki is short for nicotine, and he had been rapping about a cigarette the entire time. Logic, or as he is credited as a writer by his full birth name, Sir Robert Bryson Hall II, does his share of producing the beats he raps on, specifically, “Nikki,” “Under Pressure,” and “Driving Miss Daisy.”
Like I said, Logic is not new to the hip-hop world; he released his first mixtape, Young, Broke, and Infamous, for digital download in December of 2010. Following up, he released another installation of his Young Sinatra mixtape series every year, the most recent being in May of 2013. With nearly a year and a half of touring with Kid Cudi and not releasing any new music, it is impressive that he was able to sell 71k copies in his first week. Ironically, rapper J Cole told Logic the day before the release of Under Pressure to “not worry about first-week sales”; in retrospect, he really didn’t need to worry at all. Check out Logic’s album on iTunes, available now.
Tracks on Under Pressure I found most notable were “Soul Food,” “Buried Alive,” “Nikki,” and “Alright” feat. Big Sean
Find out more about Logic!
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