label: weightless

producers: blueprint

guests: lioness, blueprint, dose one, blacksmif

rating
tracklisting
1. Introduction
2. What It Takes
3. Me vs. Myself feat. I
4. Lioness
5. Blaow!! feat. Lioness
6. Favorite Things Intro
7. Favorite Things feat. Blueprint of Greenhouse Effect
8. Check It Out
9. BlackSmif
10. Illogistics
11. Angel
12. Dose One
13. Hate In A Puddle
14. Blueprint
15. Tale Of A Griot
16. Cinderella Complex feat. Blueprint of Greenhouse Effect

 

Unforeseen Shadows

clas·sic n.

A work of acknowledged excellence and authority, or its author:

Very few album reviews start with the definition of such a bold and utterly glorifying term. There are albums which are declared classics the moment they are released, but weeks, months, or even years later, they are forgotten. Such will not, should not, and could not be the case with Illogic's "Unforeseen Shadows".

un·fore·seen adj.

Not felt or realized beforehand; unexpected:

It seems Illogic truly knew that this album would be a breath of fresh air, a reminder to all of us what a well-composed piece of work could turn out to be. He must have also known, however, that he is not the biggest name in the underground hip-hop circuit. To say I expected this caliber of an album from some Ohio-dwelling emcee named Illogic is a fallacy. Shame on me for not even knowing who illogic was until Slug gives him a shout-out.

"Dose One is a weirdo / Mr. Dibbs is a hobo / Illogic is my hero / I give nobody a promo" -Atmosphere "Travel"

Hold up, Illogic? Who's he?

My question has been answered, and all doubts have been rectified.

Unforeseen Shadows opens with a 1:41 "Introduction" brought to you by Illogic, which serves it's purpose completely. It sheds a little light on who Illogic is himself, and builds up for the main event, the rest of the album. Throughout Unforeseen Shadows there are four other artists (Lioness, BlackSmif, Blueprint, and Dose One) who take the 'hosting' duty, all over the same Blueprint backdrop which was provided for the introduction. Each interlude paves the way for the next few tracks to be presented.

The first official track on this album is "What It Takes", where Illogic tells you plainly what it takes to be an emcee. While the concept seems simple enough, it is still flipped brilliantly. "It takes a sense of focus and clear mindstate, It takes shaping destiny and accepting fate / It takes you taking a stand and not conceit, It takes you being and acting like a man and not a beast" The production to this track is average, but the rhymes are far from that. The next track, "Me vs. Myself" has Illogic battling a dope rapper over a heavy bass-driven beat. Who he is battling is really the crative part, himself.

After a few brief words from Lioness, "Blaow!" begins. The rhymes are battle-esque, and not many can do this art better. Lioness remains by Illogic's side to drop the chorus on this track. The album's true gem comes next, with a brief discussion of the song by Illogic and Blueprint, before the real thing starts. "Favorite Things" is one of those tracks where you nod in agreement with every word said. Nodding your head to the Blueprint instrumental is also a popular thing to do. The concept is simple, Blueprint and Illogic rhyme about their favorite things in hip-hop, but the simplicity of it may be the reason of its overall dopeness. His patterns and flow remind me of Pharoahe Monch's multi-syllabic rhyme structure on tracks such as "Check It Out", while on other tracks Illogic's flow is unique and ultimately one of the best out there.

"Illogistics" highlights the true rhyming ability of this emcee, while riding another nice beat provided by Blueprint. "Now while you on some nonsense, I be on some next sense, The only logical human is Illogic, words surround Illogic / The epitomy, of secular inconsistancies, So when you look for guidance, shop with me" Every emcee (well, almost) has a song dedicated to the female gender, and "Angel" is one of the finer ones I have heard lately. To quote Illogic directly, "It's beautiful man, I make my girl sound like she's the most beautiful being on the planet". To sum up this track in few words will not do it justice, listen to it for yourself. Blueprint's best production on this album is dedicated to "Hate In A Puddle", another creative tale by Illogic, this time on the topic of self-hatred. The beat was well-chosen, as the piano loop gives passage for Illogic to be as creative as he wants. The artist's confusion of what he is and what he should be plagues this track, as the chorus chants "When I walk past puddles my reflection calls, begging me, To answer his questions about life and it's preceptions / And tell him why I hate him so much, I wonder why I hate him so much".

The album comes to close with the tracks "Tale Of A Griot" and "Cinderella Complex". The only downpoint of this album to me comes on the "Cinderella Complex" beat, as Blueprint does not put forth his best work. The album's creativity is what shines so vivrantly. If any topic on this album has been presented by another artist previously, Illogic perfects it. His sophomore release is due out in 2001, and I cannot help but to expect another classic from an emcee who is now very high in my books. If he shows even more development on the mic, and Blueprint shows advancements on his production, we might not even be ready for the next album.

To quote Blueprint, "I want everybody out there to realize, this is no, run-of-the mill, this is no haphazard attempt at making an album, or collection of songs - this is genuine music".

I couldn't have put it better myself.

review: radi8

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