Is he 2 Chainz or is he Tity Boi? Is he G.O.O.D. Music or DTP? Is he still Playa Circle’s “Duffle Bag Boy” or is he a brand new entity in the Hip Hop community? Regardless the name and the affiliation Tauheed Epps is most definitely one of the hottest rappers in the game right now. With over a decade under his belt as a major label artist it wasnt until Tity Boi changed his name for commercial appeal and success to 2 Chainz. This change was followed by a slew of features and mixtape after mixtape making him one of the most consistent on the mixtape circuit. Who could forget the crossover smash featuring TI on the remix “Spend It.” Every radio station from pop to urban had it in rotation, its been quoted on Sports Center and even ABC’s the View. So the hood to the most conservative white women were all in their Lambo’s to Caravan’s riding around and getting it. The song was infectious and everyone knew it even if they didnt know the artist behind the banger.
As previously stated 2 Chainz took over the mixtape circuit and figured if the label wasn’t going to do it he would create his own brand and promote himself. Consequently, he released successful mixtapes series like Im So Cold, Codeine Cowboys & T.R.U. Religion. All of this created the buzz needed and was eventually signed to DefJam after being released from Ludacris’ DTP Imprint. Now solo, he’s not rolling dolo, he’s linked with another camp and not just any camp but with hitmaker Kanye West’s G.O.O.D Music. Chainz has been dubbed, by myself and fellow music aficionado Slashwaterboy, to be the grown up Lil Wayne. He has successfully swagger jacked Wayne’s style with a maturity of a seasoned 36 year old artist. Yes, 2 Chainz aint new to the game nor is he a spring chicken. He’s been rapping for almost 20 years and now has the chance to show what he’s made of. To show that he is more than a fly by night artist or someone who will forever be a bench player.
Based On A T.R.U. Story unfortunately, is absolutely nothing special. The album is average as a whole but is full of star power and features and does have some ready radio singles and songs that will definitely set the clubs on fire. This is evident by the singles that have already been dropped like the Drake assisted “No Lie” and “I Love Dem Strippers” feat Nicki Minaj. The other standout tracks on the album are “Extremely Blessed” feat The Dream, “Ghetto Dreams” feat Scarface & John Legend and “In Town” feat Mike Posner. If you all get the bonus edition then you can add the Chris Brown featured track Countdown. Aside from that the album falls flat. No one expects to hear sheer lyricism from 2 Chainz but its moreso the energy and vibe that he delivers charismatically in his songs. Much to my dismay that wasn’t enough to carry this album to being good. On the opening track “Yuck” featuring Lil Wayne, well the title says all you need to know. Lil Wayne further proves my point that he isnt and shouldnt be considered in the Greatest of All Time conversations and actually disputes my point that he is a closer. They both had a subpar flow on this track. “Stop Me Now” featuring Dolla Boi, “Crack,” “Dope Peddler” are essentially the same song. They speak on the same stereotypical and predictable subject matter with no creativity that is ever so prevalent in the Hip-Hop community. “Birthday Song” couldn’t even be saved by a feature by label head Kanye West and the same can also be said about “Wut We Doin” feat Cap1. The bonus songs “Riot,” “Like Me” and “I Feel Good” are solid tracks but were released on other projects.
At best Based On A T.R.U. Story is 50/50 and in all honesty we could have done without this story. I expected so much more coming from 2 Chainz not only because of the solid mixtapes and singles that he’s dropped but because this was his G.O.O.D Music debut and this was anything but GOOD. Kanye West being the musical genius that he is inspired thoughts of greatness and a story of Southern dominance from his protege and we got more of the same monotonous dribble that currently plagues the radio. I dont want to count 2 Chainz out but to proclaim this album will do anything more than gold is a far reach.
However, Based On A T.R.U Story will be in stores 8/21 make sure you all go out and cop it. Id recommend you live streaming the album online first before you go invest your money on this one.