Album Review: 2 Chainz’ “Based On A T.R.U. Story”

Rating: 7.5 / 10

First and foremost, 2 Chainz isn’t the type of artist you hold to a lyrical standard of, say, a Lupe Fiasco or a Jay-Z. His music is created in a different vein; a charismatic, ridiculous, entertaining vein that can easily go from ludicrous and blatant to devilishly clever within a span of a bar, while keeping an ear to the street, so to speak. That’s not to imply that 2 Chainz isn’t a good rapper; on the technical side, he’s actually as solid as they come, as he’s known for flipping deliveries in order to maintain his unpredictable verse-structure.

With that being said, Based On A T.R.U. Story isn’t the album of the year candidate I secretly hoped it to be. This is also not 2 Chainz best project, or even him at his best due to a few tracks in the early half of the project sounding too redundant. However, move past that, and it’s a solid, fun output with a few singles that should turn heads.

The intro has 2 Chainz at his BEST as far as bars and charisma in “Yuck” (too bad Lil’ Wayne couldn’t have a “Drought 3” style relapse here), and it serves as a barometer to measure the rest of the album. Unfortunately, aside from the “No Lie” single with Drake and the Kanye feature on “Birthday Song“, nothing here truly stands out as great, although there are a notable selections. “I’m Different” has an early 2000s Southern sound to it (as we’re now in 2012, the production sounds almost too simple), “Extremely Blessed” has The-Dream and 2 Chainz sharing on the subject of a fine female, and “Stop Me Now” has him trading bars with Dolla Boy over a soulful sample.

The great tracks start as soon as he begins to take chances, and the Mike Posner feature on “In Town” is as big of a chance you’ll see on the regular edition of the LP. Surprisingly, 2 Chainz handles the song quite well, considering the vibe seems more suited for Posner. “Ghetto Dreams” is more of a lock as far as standout tracks; featuring John Legend and Scarface, it serves as a reflective track that has everyone at their best. 2 Chainz wisely chooses to avoid the punchline-every-bar approach and sticks to the subject of the song (mostly), and proves to be one of the strongest songs on TRU Story that even select Hip-Hop heads should appreciate.

Although there’s a regular version, the deluxe LP is the way to go, as the extra singles help to bring up the replay value of the project as a whole. 2 Chainz takes a huge shot with Chris Brown on “Countdown” due to the nature of the Dubstep-influenced hook, but it works. Another huge gamble pays off as he flips a Weeknd sample and goes into his mixtape form for some of his most flagrant bars to DATE on “Like Me:”

“Me and your girl network, now she wanna know my net worth/

Woodgrain, chestnut, t*ttyf**k, CHEST NUT!”

The vibe continues as the last two tracks has him returning to the familiar sounds of the Don Cannon-produced “I Feel Good” and the previously heard “Riot“.

As it stands, it’s a fun play for 2 Chainz fans, but due to the redundancy for the first half of the LP (which could be due to its sequencing), it suffers. It’s not his best, but it’s not as bad as Internet critics would have you believe as well. Listen to it for yourself, and act accordingly.

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30 Responses to “Album Review: 2 Chainz’ “Based On A T.R.U. Story””

      • MadVillain

        listen to Big Krit – Live from the Underground or Trademark da Skydiver – Flamingo Barnes

      • kstaxx

        I jus heard that Trademark Da Skydiver ”Flamingo Barnes” mixtape from Intro to outro its a pretty good tape overall. STAMP THAT!

      • kstaxx

        I would suggest you check out Sy Ari Da Kid ”Defintion of Defintion” mixtape its better than 2 chainz entire album.

  1. Lyve Wire

    2 chains is an average rapper, at best. funny thing is, when he was titty boy, nobody was checking for him. but now that ‘money and mollies’ are his main things to talk about, ppl love him and give him a pass for his under average rhymes. prime example of getting a pass because ppl like you. imo, gucci is better, but he get blamed for killing ‘hip-hop’ everyday. i dont get it. maybe i should wear unfastened snapbacks and TRU religion too, lol.

    • kstaxx

      Realest shit ever said on this site, I dont understand how people can like 2chainz when Gucci and even Future is better than this guy by far.

    • K1ng Eljay | Leon Jr

      …I was with you until the “people like you” part.

      The thing about music is that there’s different kinds of it. Not all of it’s going to be the same, so even if you don’t rock with something, that doesn’t make it any less a part of the culture. Things change. Things evolve.

      2 Chainz is cool, but he’s definitely not a top-tier rapper. But fundamentally, he’s nice. As far as flipping flows and understanding the basics, he is too. Gucci IS better in that aspect, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that Tity Boi knows what he’s doing.

      And maybe you need to talk to different people… because I rock with Gucci, too. Hadn’t heard that he was killing Hip-Hop.

      Either way, thanks for the read.

  2. Arthur A-Trace Wilder

    I don’t understand why this guy is even a rapper just like so many other artist these days he depreciates the value of hip hop as a skill. In other words he can’t rap at all!

  3. MiiUziWeighsATon

    Bought the bootlegga…listenex to it 3 times…tgrew it out the car window…weak shyt don’t survive in my whip…sorry 2Chainz, go find work at Subway or some shyt

  4. JaffarR

    Production- 7 (Although there’s many bangers, but most of the beats sound too similar and there’s not much versatility).

    Lyrics- 6. (I was beyond kind with this grade. 2 Chainz has had some horrible lines on this one, but a few made me chuckle so I was a bit lenient. Nevertheless, mediocre bars at best).

    Songs- 6. (Subject matter and content are decent… Not that impressive though. Too many songs about girls and shit he has).

    Overall- 6.5/10. (Decent. Not great. But a few songs, I can listen to).

  5. Faded G

    I copped the album yesterday, and to be honest……I would give it the
    same rating 7.5. Yes he is no Nas or Curren$y or Big K-R-I-T, but this
    album is not suppose to be a lyrical masterpiece. There are different
    aspects of Hip-Hop, and I cant stand when some people say that rappers
    like Waka Flocka, Gucci Mane, 2 Chainz, etc. are killing hip-hop. Its
    not like the names I just said are spectacular on the mic (Gucci doesn’t
    get the credit he deserves), but they make music that you can play at
    the clubs and have fun with. Overall, people should have a more open
    mind when it comes to hip-hop, not every single artist is going to have
    lyrical skills as a Rakim, Big Pun, 2Pac, etc.

  6. Mad Max❗

    Anybody seen Zoolander? He does the same pose and calls it different names. Thats 2 Chainz. I swear to god in each and every song he says absolutely positively NOTHING! Listen to ‘Crack’. Recite the lyrics to Riot out loud with no beat. Like come on. He had to rename himself because Tity Boi sucked too! Damnit he has two alias’ and NEITHER of them are good rappers. To think this man graduated from ASU with a 4.0 blows my damn mind.

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