Illogic is an artist from Columbus who has been making music for over twenty years, both as part of the group Greenhouse Effect with Blueprint, and as a solo artist. Over that time, he’s worked with everyone from Blockhead to doseone to Lucid Optics to illpoetic to RJD2 to Bluu Edwards to Odd Nosdam, just to name a few. With all that he had accomplished as an emcee, Illogic decided a few years back that he wanted to learn how to produce beats as well. In 2020, he gave us his first self-produced album, Autopilot. Now, after a couple of beat tapes, he’s back with his second self-produced album, The Transition.

Autopilot was a really good album, but it doesn’t take long into The Transition to realize that Illogic has leveled up with this project. Not only is he handling the beats and rhymes, he’s also doing all the cuts as well, which is a whole other skill set. Focusing on the production for a minute, you can just feel his level of comfort in his skill set now, as the rhythms are subtly more complex and layered, and he’s able to pick a few moments throughout the album to pick some really poignant samples that emphasize the meaning of a song. Then there’s just the way that he’s just hitting you with all these different approaches, rhythms, instrumentation, and so forth, that just really lets you know that he is ready to rock like a producer who knows what he’s doing and is comfortable digging in and getting a track where it needs to be. As an emcee, Illogic is sharp as he’s ever been, hitting you with these personal and reflective songs about his life in hip hop, and as a family man. It’s nothing too outside the box, but when all the lyricism is honest and barred up the way Illogic has made it here, that’s all you really need. When you put all the pieces together, you get an album that just immediately feels familiar, like you’ve already been rocking to it for years. Then when you dig into the rich production and personal lyricism, it’s just really easy to form a personal connection to the album.

The Transition is an album that not a lot of artists make twenty-plus years into their careers, but Illogic challenged himself a few years ago, and he rose to that challenge. Now he’s producing just as well as he’s rhyming, and his music has never sounded better.