• S
    • M
    • L
    • XL
    • XXL
      • XXL
      • XL
      • L
      • M
      • S

Album Review: Illogic & Blockhead, Capture The Sun

Columbus MC Illogic’s catalog is a deep one, mostly stockpiled with bars reminiscent of rap’s golden era. His lyrics easily double as poetic verses as he maneuvers his way through heavy topics—building a lasting relationship with God, being a good role model for his kids, life after marriage. But when paired with his aggressive freestyle-battle roots, he manages to not come across as the preachy, “conscious rapper”. Those elements are sharpened on his newest album, a collaborative effort with producer Blockhead (best known for his work with Aesop Rock)—Capture The Sun.

The album’s brightest spots are when Illogic’s at his most vulnerable. “Bridges”, a short offering (a minute and a half), chronicles his most trying moments, which span from his introduction to fatherhood, having an absentee father and being diagnosed with cancer as a baby. “See I’ve been marked for death since the womb/ Umbilical chord around my neck I barely made it out/Plus they found cancer in my retina when I was two/Became a Cyclops but saw clearer than everybody else/Didn’t understand my blessing, thought it was a curse,” he says. On “Finally Free” Blockhead samples Le Systeme Crapoutchik’s “All I Have” (as Kid Cudi did in “My World”) while Illogic details an ill-natured relationship that leads a woman to suicide in order to escape an abusive boyfriend. The album’s highlight, “Last Breath (Family Fabric)” is a tribute to his parents where he thanks his mom for staying strong throughout the early stages of his cancer and shaping him as a man. He also thanks his stepdad for being in his corner: “Treated me equal to my brothers, though I wasn’t your child/Took the weight on your shoulders most men couldn’t bench/You embraced it, laced it from the love to the discipline”.

Despite its mind-twisting subject matter and weighted themes, Capture The Sun has a major flaw—its sound. An all-too-familiar issue with conscious brands of rap is that they sometimes sound like they’ve missed their mark on hip-hop’s timeline. Illogic’s appeal is valuable, in that, he maintains a voice for the “every day” man—being a good dad, looking within for inspiration & strength, and building a good family base at home. The subject matter and lyrics are solid, but Blockhead’s sound isn’t current or weird enough to be engaging like his 2009 instrumental album The Music Scene. Tracks like “Neva Heard”, “Justified” and “She Loves Me” could all believably be from a decade ago. That production could be the barrier that keeps Illogic from garnering new and younger listeners, which by delving into the introspective nature of his music, could be fine by him.—Lawrence Burney (@TrueLaurels)

  • http://twitter.com/DreDaDon_ Serve This Royalty

    just cuz Blockhead production style is unique and isn’t that southern trap horse shit Fuck XXL

  • Fire Lawrence Burney

    I’m usually picky when it comes to reviews so I try not to speak my mind in internet but seriously, who f____n wrote this? Please fire him, now. This is one of the most random, pseudo reviews i’ve ever read and I know that people use “ive ever” way too much in internet but i’m absolutely serious. I’m not even a huge Illogic and Blockhead fan but this album was just amazing. First – Blockhead has a unique style and he’s been doing it for waaay to long. He is not looking for younger listeners, a.k.a. a bunch of twitter obssesed kids who probably still think that SWAG is a thing. If you are serously giving Capture The Sun M for beats than you are a really really close minded kid, Lawrence Burney. You literally know nothing about hip-hop and production. Did you seriously give OJ Da Juiceman XL for production? I mean really…..generic trap beats that any teenager can make in 1 hour get XL? You should be fired….for real. Never reading this bullshit magazine again.

  • Logic

    XXL’s relevance isn’t actually on the hip-hop timeline yet, so it’s a little rich for them to talk about it.

    • Josh

      LOL