Tag Archives: Under Pressure

Logic- “Top Ten” featuring Big K.R.I.T. (Produced by 6ix)

500_1425060908_h0nhit6qu613wmmlfqzs_88This song came out of nowhere today. Logic calls on Big K.R.I.T. for his latest song, “Top Ten”. The 6ix produced song has a similar vibe to Logic’s debut album Under Pressure and should not be skipped over. Big K.R.I.T. kills his verse as well. Stream “Top Ten” down low, and be sure to catch Logic on his world tour going on right now.

Written by E.L.

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Year In Review: Erik’s Top 10 Projects Of 2014

yearinreview.jpgThe year is coming to a close and 2015 is right around the corner. We thought it would only be appropriate to look back on what 2014 was in music. Therefore, Jesse and I decided to compile lists separately and talk about our favorites throughout the year. Here are my top 10 projects of 2014–in no particular order.

Vince Staples‘ Hell Can Wait EP– October 7, 2014- Def Jam Recordingshellcanwaitfinal-1I’m going to start off with what was the shortest release on my list, and for good reason. Vince Staple’s Hell Can Wait EP was some of the best material of the year, and it was only the “Debut EP” with Def Jam. “Fire” & “Blue Suede” are some of the standouts, and Staples continues to write tales of growing up in L.A. This is only the begining for Vince, and we expect big things to come from the artist in 2015.

Logic’s Under Pressure– October 21, 2014- Def Jam Recordingslogic-underpressure

Logic took a bold stance with going the major label route and releasing a retail album with Def Jam. However, we were shocked with how the risk payed off. Under Pressure is some of the best music, not only of the year, but of the decade, complete with some of the best production to date. Logic will continue to support the album throughout next year on his world tour. Don’t even hesitate to download this or take a listen to standouts like “Never Enough” or “Bounce.”

Chuck Inglish’s Convertibles- April 8, 2014- Sounds Like Fun Records, Federal Prism Records29e11a57Chuck Inglish had a huge year for himself. In addition to producing for tons of artists like Asher Roth and Chromeo, he even dropped a short EP before the album titled Droptops. Convertibles is just an extension of that EP and it is just so dope. It is everything a fan of Chuck wants and it sets up the next release for The Cool Kid’s Shark Week. Check out standouts like “Easily” or “Legs” featuring Chromeo.

Sir Michael Rocks’ Banco– July 29, 2014- 6 Cell PhonesbancoFrom one Cool Kid to another, Banco has some of the best tunes I’ve heard all year with Mikey Rock’s new style. He changed it up quite a bit, but it is definitely welcome. He was even able to get the CEO of Seaworld to resign because of his track “Fuck Seaworld”. Like I stated before, Shark Week is going to be something special.


IAMSU!’s Sincerely Yours– May 13, 2014- HBK Gang Records, Alternative Distribution Allianceiamsu-sincerely-yours-coverIAMSU! and the HBK Gang seemingly came out of nowhere in 2014. Su’s debut album Sincerely Yours did not disappoint at all and put the bay area on the map. He got some huge features from 2 Chainz, Wiz Khalifa & E-40. This was by far one of the best releases of the year even though it came out early. All production was in-house too, which makes it that much more authentic. “Hipster Girls” always gets the ladies dancing and closes the album out extremely well.

Mac Miller’s Faces- May 11th, 2014- REMember Music500_1399814298_mac_miller_faces_mixtape_590x590_20This project was all over the place, and I loved it. From the samples to the jazz-like instrumentation, it was by far much more compelling than any of Miller’s previous releases. He had tons of top notch features that fit exactly how they were supposed to. With the signing to Warner Brothers Records, 2015 is looking to be a big year from Mac Miller, so expect even more from the rapper in the future.

Schoolboy Q’s Oxymoron- Top Dawg, InterscopeYxSBE2mThis album was so hyped up that I almost lost faith in it, but boy, did School Boy Q deliver. After seeing him perform twice in 2013 personally, I wanted a much more refined sound from the TDE artist. Luckily, all of his fans got exactly what they wanted. “Hell Of A Night,” “Studio,” and “Man Of The Year” are some of the standouts, but the album is better when listened to from start to finish. TDE definitely blew up even more this year, and not because of Kendrick.


YG’s My Krazy Life- March 18th, 2014- Def Jam Recordings

1f3bce4388b7e62cbac35330bd3d53d3.902x762x1Yeah, we all know YG got snubbed from a Grammy nomination this year, but that doesn’t take away the fact that the artist released one of the best albums of the year. My Krazy Life was entirely produced by DJ-Mustard and put that West Coast sound back on the map. The laid-back beats and heavy bass lines wrapped around tales of being a blood growing up from YG completely captures similar feels from when Dr. Dre dropped The Chronic. “Bicken Back Being Bool”, “Do It To Ya” and “Left, Right” are some of my favorites.


Ab-Soul’s These Days…– June 24th, 2014- Top Dawg

Ab-Soul,_'These_Days…',_front_cover_art,_May_30,_2014
Ab-Soul has always been overlooked. He speaks his mind and raps over beats that are experimental, and sometimes, downright weird. I get that, but he has some of the most interesting things to say. He speaks on some real topics, even if some of it is about getting money. That completely makes sense considering where his is in his life right now. TDE is one of the hottest labels right now and they show no signs of slowing down. “Hunnid Stax” is one of my favorites, but what really took it from me was one of the bonus songs, “W.W.S.D.”

Asher Roth’s Retrohash– April 22nd, 2014- Federal Prism, Pale Fire

Asher-roth-retrohashAsher switched it up and went Beck like with Retrohash. Less raps and more life stories with some real smooth and relaxing music. It is indeed very moody but that shouldn’t turn any fan of Asher away. It is a great album start to finish, even if it is only 10 songs long. “Tangerine Girl” also became the go-to song for your local Skate Land!


Honorable Mentions:

Skizzy Mars’ Pace– March 9th, 2014. Penthouse Music
skizzymars-paceI wasn’t all that impressed the first time I listened to this project from Skizzy. However, with every listen after, it just continued to grow on me. Skizzy articulates stories of growing up, drugs and women, as well as being an artist. He is the definition of an artist coming up, especially as future releases will keep defining his sound. Expect big things to come from Skizzy. It just all “Makes Sense”.

Wiz Kahlifa’s Blacc Hollywood– August 18th, 2014- Atlantic, Rostrum Records
3497dc0f4e5c6ad2beb472d1d2f4fad1Ok, I know, it was basically more of the same from Wiz, but this album hit the speakers hard. From the intro to “We Dem Boyz,” Wiz turned his production value all the way up. That is what a major label will do and it sounds good. We also got a glimpse of Wiz’s personal life, as well as him transcending into a rap superstar with sold out arena shows. 28 Gramswas an experiment, while Blacc Hollywood was just more refined and sounded like it should be preformed in a huge area. Ironic that he did a tiny tour for it. Either way, it was still a great album from start to finish for a more Pop influenced Wiz.


Travis Scott’s Days Before Rodeo– August 18, 2014- Grand Hustle

Album_Cover_of_Travis_Scott's_Day_Before_RodeoTravis Scott put out some incredibly good music with great features, it just left me wanting more, so much more. The moody structure and the drug infused themes are captivating and I want to to know what happens next for the G.O.O.D. music rapper and producer.

There you have it! These are my favorites and the ones that should at least be mentioned. Let me know what you think and be ready for more from Smooth Waves in 2015!

Written by E.L.

Logic’s “Under Pressure” World Tour Dates

10004036_459952464108156_6719704742399174423_nAfter releasing his debut album Under Pressure through Def Jam, Logic announces a world tour to support it. The 45-stop tour starts on January 27th in Indianapolis and ends April 2nd in Hamburg, Germany. You can check out the full schedule below and make sure to take a peek at our review of Logic’s Under Pressure right hereeoaxzkatq0lhxxlgavwb

Review: Logic’s major label debut ‘Under Pressure’ is on par with Kendrick Lamar’s ‘Good Kid Maad City’

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Logic has actually been around for a while. For all of you who think this is his first album or project of any sort, it’s not. Since 2011, Logic has released four mixtapes. All of the tapes received praise from blogs, labels and his fans. This led to Logic signing a major record deal with Def Jam Records, due in part to the support of the legendary producer No I.D. Instead of following the trend of staying independent like many up and coming Hip-Hop artists today, most notably Macklemore. Logic wanted to pursue the debut studio album route. This route has been taken by fewer and fewer artists lately. It seems that rappers with a few good mixtapes under their belts that go on to release a debut album through a label have fallen off very quickly. This is not the case for Logic and Def Jam. Logic had stated previously that he did this album his own way on his own time and he was not lying.

Under Pressure is an album in the purest sense of the word. It is a story that should be listened to from start to finish, the way an album is supposed to be listened to. Each song flows seamlessly into the next. The album is tied together by a Siri like narrater named Thalia, who is reminiscent of the narrator in A Tribe Called Quest’s album Midnight Marauders. It is an interesting way to help guide the listener through Logic’s tale, without being disruptive. Thalia also gives a good bit of insight into the making of Under Pressure.

Logic doesn’t waste time bragging or being misogynistic throughout the album. He discusses real problems, real feelings and raw emotions. He covers intimate problems with his father, substance abuse and past relationships gone wrong. If you’re looking for something similar to 2 Chainz or Juicy J you’ll have to look elsewhere.

Right off the bat on the “Intro,” Logic touches on the fears he had making the album and the high expectations and overwhelming pressure he felt. He effortlessly weaves through the slow ballad type piano backdrop and once the drums kick in, there is no turning back.

Each song on the album has an individual theme that Logic delves into. There are no fillers on Under Pressure. Logic strays as far as possible from the stereotypical rap album script of 2014 with Under Pressure.

“Soul Food D,” is about Logic’s come up in the industry and his motivation to be better than some of his idols. “I’m Gone,” has Logic speaking on his old weed habits and past relationships. “Gang Related,” is self-explanatory and boasts a crazy chanting sample throughout.

“Buried Alive,” was released prior to the album drop.  But it fits in nicely with the overall theme of pressure. Logic and the listeners spirits are lifted briefly, once “Bounce” comes around on the album. Straying, for a moment, from the serious themes of previous tracks, he speaks on his crew and how much they have meant to him from the start. “Growing Pains III” is another tale of Logic’s coming of age. His father is a recurring topic and is touched on again in this song. 

“Never Enough” is a song about substance abuse. A topic not foreign to the genre of hip-hop/ rap. But, what sets Logic apart from the pack on this one is the way he sampled two classic songs. He mixes both Kid Cudi’s “Pursuit Of Happiness” and Outkast’s “So Fresh, So Clean,” and makes a totally original sounding song. For me, this is one of the standouts on the album.

“Metropolis” is a smooth jazzy record that has Logic bouncing lyrically through the beat. “Nikki” puts Logic’s battle with smoking Cigarettes on a track. I like both of these track a lot, but they are almost overshadowed by the nine minute title track, “Under Pressure”.

We’ve already heard the shortened version of the title track, but the full version is much different. Early on in the song the dial tone hits and everything slows down, except Logic’s flow. The spacey guitar really compliments his voice, making you want to really listen to what he’s saying. Logic produced this song himself, and what he does with the rest of the song and beat is impressive. He seamlessly blends both beats together and continues to spit. It makes it even more amazing to hear a talented rapper who can also produce his own music. Don’t skip this song.

The regular version of the album finishes with “Till The End.” A song with no hook, just Logic and a female vocalist. The track boasts one of the best verses we’ve heard from an artist in a long time. It was an extremely strong way for Logic to close the curtains on Under Pressure.

Two of the three bonus tracks on the deluxe edition, “Driving Miss Daisy” and “Alive” had been released before the album. The songs are the only two on the album with featured artists. Childish Gambino and Big Sean are good features to have on an album, but something about hearing their voices seems out of place, Logic didn’t need them. Regardless of how they fit into the album they are fun songs to bump when you’re in a good mood or in the car.

Logic’s debut album Under Pressure is something special. It is a major label debut that doesn’t disappoint, a rare feat these days. He proves to all other up and coming artists that signing to a major label doesn’t necessarily mean you lose creative control. This is Logic’s album, not Def Jam’s. He proved to everyone that he has talent not only on the mic but on the boards. Under Pressure is a statement. It is Logic’s way of saying he’s here to stay.

Written By Berg and JW

Logic- “Under Pressure” (Official Album Stream)

BxMM3dSIMAAUZBmLogic’s Def Jam debut is out today! Team Visionary was nice enough to post the full stream of Under Pressure this morning on their Soundcloud. This album was something that I’ve been looking forward to for awhile and coming from someone who has listened to the album through about five times already, you really don’t want to miss this. Be sure to check out the full stream down low and go support Logic by purchasing his album on iTunes right now! Expect the review for this to drop later today.