Review: Logic, ‘Young Sinatra – Welcome to Forever’


Logic, Young Sinatra - Welcome To Forever

Logic Delivers Exceptionally on …Welcome to Forever
Logic • Young Sinatra – Welcome to Forever  • Released: May 7, 2013

Prior to his inclusion in 2013’s freshman class in XXL Magazine, I was aware of who Gaithersburg, Maryland rapper Logic was.  That is likely more noble than some folks, completely unaware of the MC.  BUT I hadn’t followed him closely or took the time to listen/review  his mixtapes – yeah, now I’m an awful person, I know.  I’ve never been a huge mixtape listener, probably because of the numerous albums of various genres I try to cover, let alone adding more to the listening stack.

Seeing Logic receive national press made me want to explore what the rapper had to offer.  Better yet, it made me feel obligated because this 23-year old must be about to ‘breakthrough’. Listening to my first ever Logic mixtape, Young Sinatra – Welcome to Forever  (which is his third in the Young Sinatra series), it made me feel GUILTY. Why wasn’t I on this before?!?! But as Logic foretold in his XXL feature, this will “set up [his] career.”

Young Sinatra – Welcome to Forever hopefully represents the type of material and style hip hop audiences can anticipate from the newly signed MC. Where is he signed? Def Jam baby, the home of hip-hop.  Take a listen to this mixtape, and you will see the hype is more than justified.  Home boy can spit. Logic (aka Sir Robert Bryson Hall II) sports an agile flow, an edgy style, and yeah, he swears…like a lot. Add all those aspects together  and the fact that parents won’t approve (as usual) and you have rap’s next MC to watch.

Sure the ‘white’ rapper seems to be a hard sell as many have come and gone with mediocre success outside of Eminem, but Logic could well buck the trend.  Like really… he’s impressive.  And why should race matter, as the MC often states throughout his rhymes? BTW, Logic is biracial.

Welcome To Forever” will undoubtedly serve as Logic’s introduction to many. It is a sound one, patterned after many established rapper’s autobiographical openers.  The best rhyme by Logic: “…Remember meeting Nas for the first time…he said that real hip-hop sh*t I had it / thinking to myself ‘Damn man, you made, Illmatic.’” On “925”, Logic manages to drop references to Drake, Kanye West, and Lupe Fiasco through his top-notch rhymes including “Started from the bottom as a young and gettin’ blunted now I run it like a marathon ho / yeah it’s on ho hits motherf*cker, hits Barry Bonds ho…”.

On “Roll Call” he boldly rocks out the beat from OutKast’s “Ms. Jackson” and confirms such with lyric “Y’all probably think I’m crazy for touching this instrumental…”. Even so, there are bolder, more memorable lines including “Music is my main b*tch, not time for other girls / I’m finna blow like Hiroshima…” or “Now these thirsty b*tches on the dick, we call that Aquafina…”  Wow – unapologetic right?

Logic rides a gangsta beat courtesy of C-Sick on “5AM” with the swag to back it up: “But I got God on my side, always down to ride / don’t get it twisted, I ain’t perfect in the least / I’m still all up in your girl jeans like a crease…”. On “Break it Down” featuring Jhené Aiko, Logic shows his pop-rap side, but not without keeping it real.  The beat grinds and the overall tone can be likened to stoner rap, which is incredibly popular these days.  That said, Logic raps about more than some trees, even if the hook suggests “I’mma get high, yeah, yeah yeah…” (wordplay, my friends).

Feel Good” finds Logic channeling his inner Kanye, riding a sample used previously by West himself.  Never one to concede bars,  Logic goes autobiographical: “I remember no heat in the winter time / now that I’m eating haters grilling me like dinner time…” On the proceeding “Saturday (Skit)”, Logic portrays a skit with John Pops Witherspoon in regards to his desire to make make music.  Rarely are skits worthwhile, but “Saturday” captivates.

On the Low” provides the obligatory superstar collaboration, and it is a good one.  Featuring Kid Ink and ‘Mr. Pop a molly I’m sweating’ Trinidad James, “On The Low” features hardcore production that’s as malicious sounding as anything else currently out.  Logic handles the hook and first verse, Kid Ink the second, and Trinidad James the third.  Who rocks it the hardest? Logic and he should – it’s his mixtape! “Walk On By” shows no drop off, and why should it when Logic “always shouting out my team cause I get all the plays…”? “Walk On By” happens to be one of the true ‘gems’.

He truly ‘comes up’ on “The Come Up”, a play on Drake’s “Started From the Bottom” that replaces the Canadian MC’s hook with “Came a long way, this the come up / been a long time coming, it’s the come up / been a long damn time it’s the come up…”

Logic gets “Nasty”, delivering an ample amount of TKO’s be it “Menage et plus one, I’m f*cking four models / wordplay that elevates minds like Aristotle” or “I’ve got the verse that your Sunday service wouldn’t care to preach / Second coming of Christ flow they like whoa…” Free-flowing rhymes and one last stinger seals the deal for the standout cut: “Never stop and finger f*ck the world ‘til the day my album drop…”

If Logic’s ballsiness is too much on “Nasty”, he contrasts with the pop-rap, cooler vibe of “Life is Good”. Don’t get ‘ish’ twisted though, Logic still goes hard (“Just me and my homies livin’ life over here / couple bad b*tches down to ride oh yeah…”). After two contrasting cuts in “Nasty” and “Life is Good”, Logic graces listeners with another fun-to-listen skit, “Randolph Returns”. “Ballin” is pretty self-explanatory right? Logic is aggressive and shows he’s not a one dimensional rapper by any means.  He gets an assist from his Maryland home boy C Dot Castro on the third verse.

On the superb “Young Jedi”, Logic is in good company with fellow XXL freshman Dizzy Wright. On “The High Life”, Logic goes for the narrative approach. He is his most mature when discussing the power of love: “…I met this girl the other day / the type of girl that make the pain fade away / and I have a feeling she gon’ be my next / cause she make me forget all about my ex / I’m talking something that’s deeper than just sex…” On “Common Logic / Midnight Marauder”, Logic opts for the ole ‘two for one’ special, which includes a self-produced beat by Logic (“Midnight Marauder” portion).

The effort ends consistently as it began.  On “Just A Man”, Logic speaks of his flaws, stating “…I’m just a man homie / flesh and blood, I’m just a man / But I don’t think they understand homie / I ain’t perfect, I’m just a man / Y’all think I’m more than just a man…” His best line? “Now I ain’t perfect, on occasion I’ve strayed / it’s been forever since I prayed and I guess today is the day / so I step in the booth and treat that sh*t like a confession…”

He’s confident on the penultimate “Man of the Year” where haters didn’t believe in him: “they said I couldn’t do it / back when I was broke going through it / Til I got a deal, now they talkin’ bout I knew it…” On “The End”, Adele supplies the sample (“Skyfall”), with hip-hop drums providing extra swagger.  “The End” fittingly ends Young Sinatra – Welcome to Forever capably.

Ultimately, mixtapes rarely receive the press or the grandeur of an album release.  That said, this is one that definitely should. It’s free and more importantly, its a quality offering from a potential rap star. Take a peek at all the track recommendations listed below – there’s many standout cuts no this consistent mixtape. Don’t sleep on Logic… that wouldn’t be ‘logical’.  Yeah, corny I know, but ya know…

Favorites: “Welcome to Forever,” “925,” “Roll Call,” “Feel Good,” “On The Low,” “Walk On By,” “Nasty,” “Young Jedi,” “Just A Man”

★★★★½ 

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