The Vehicle Flips' sophomore effort continued the promise of the band's debut, In Action, a few years earlier. Singer/guitarist Frank Boscoe and bassist Tim Parker regrouped after the exodus of the band's second guitarist and drummer. With help from drummer Tim Williams, the duo recorded the songs that made up The Premise Unraveled with Rob Christiansen, formerly of the band Eggs, in the producer chair. The title comes from a lyric in the first track, “Requiem for a Canceled Program". Boscoe's intelligence and his commitment to the craft of songwriting is evident throughout. His humor also steps in on a regular basis. The third track, “Welcome to the Big Ten Conference" is an ode to Pennsylvania State University's athletic program. On track seven, “Self-pity 6.0.1", Boscoe personifies a collection of clip-art. The tempo changes throughout the disc, from the somber and relaxed feel of “Song of the Slag Pile" and “Florence Scene Report" to the strumming, upbeat nature of tracks like “Swope Street Theme" and “Expendable You". The album comes to a casual close with the instrumental “Octoraro", followed by “Honeywell Round Thermostat", a dedication to the classic American device. The song originally appeared on Object Lessons on Inconspicuous Records. Boscoe was the only member of Vehicle Flips to endure the lineup changes throughout the band's tenure. The Premise Unraveled is another example of Boscoe's calculated approach to music, and his dedication to creating simple and poignant albums.
- Stephen Cramer, All Music Guide