Death of the Critic

The Incredible True Story - Review

Written by: Tom Blaich


Logic’s second studio album shouldn’t sound unfamiliar to fans, or really to anyone who has listened to him before. If anything, he has become more comfortable with his sound, like Drake trying to rap Kendrick Lamar. He still has the technical chops that we’ve seen before, but in this album he is allowed to expand upon them a little more, showing off his speed and production several times throughout the album, which is made more impressive by the fact that he always remains intelligible. His annunciation is great, which is a problem with many speed rappers.

The basic premise that he gives is two spaceship pilots, Thomas and Kai, traveling to try and find the mysterious planet “Paradise” along with their shipboard AI, who should sound very familiar from the first album. Here she functions less as a tour guide and more as an accompanying voice, taking part in the many skits that are on the album as a sort of sentient Siri.


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Their travels through space builds alongside the songs present on the album. If
Under Pressure was the story of a literal journey that Logic went through, then The Incredible True Story is more of a metaphorical story where they attempt to reach Paradise. His first album was an incredibly personal effort of how he escaped his upbringing and got to where he is, frequently being compared to Good Kid, M.A.A.D City.

He carries the influence of
Kendrick Lamar on his sleeve throughout this album, trying the same tactics of story building as Lamar did before him, albeit in a much goofier, and more heavy handed way. “The Cube” is a thirty second skit in which Kai, one of the two narrators, boasts that “bitches love the rubiks cube” as he fiddles with the toy on the ship. The album doesn’t carry the same level of emotional impact that GKMC did, and instead feeling goofy in some places as our narrator spouts exposition about how Earth was destroyed and Paradise is our only hope. It’s rather heavy handed and feels as if he is simply pouring information out at is in an effort to build his idea about “paradise vs purgatory.”


As they travel they listen to this album, in a very fourth wall breaking,
Spaceballs-esque way. They call it “the album that changed everything” and wonder which Quentin Tarantino movie that Logic based his raps off of. It’s a very different kind of braggadocio than we are used to within rap music, as even as his boasts that “I am the greatest” ring hollow, he places himself amongst people like Tarantino, Steve Jobs, Jesus, etc. He’s a little full of himself, but what artist isn’t.

He really shines on this album when he isn’t trying to be anyone else, and instead is honest to who he is. When he talks about what he’s frustrated with. “I didn’t talk about my race on the whole first album / But black versus white bullshit was still the outcome.” He’s frustrated with hip-hop “fans” who rail against party rap, “I love hip hop and I hate hip hop / Cause people that love Pac hope that Drake get shot / Cause he raps about money and bitches, for heaven’s sake / Pac did the same shit, just on a drum break.”

It helps paint the picture of a complex artist, and in these moments he shines and stands out on the album. His attempts at radio singles like “I Am The Greatest” and “Young Jesus”, however, fall short of his goal, and at the same time lose something else in this attempt. He’s at his best when he drops his emulation of other artists for realness, and I can only hope that he gets that message from this album as he moves onto his next project.

What is paradise? It’s a question that he prompts us to ask ourselves, but also one that I believe he is asking himself as he works on his next project. Will he be reborn? Or will he just create purgatory again?

1. Contact
Fade Away
White People (Scene)
Like Woah
Young Jesus (Feat. Big Lenbo)
Innermission (Feat. Lucy Rose)
I Am the Greatest
The Cube (Scene)
Lord Willin'
City of Stars
Stainless (Feat. Dria)
Babel (Scene)
Paradise (Feat. Jesse Boykins III)
Never Been
Run It
Lucidity (Scene)
The Incredible True Story

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Tom has been writing about media since he was a senior in high school. He likes long walks on the beach, dark liquor, and when characters reload guns in action movies.

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