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Joining an array of anticipated hip-hop efforts, 2 Chainz's major label debut (on Def Jam) Based On A T.R.U. Story does not disappoint. While it may lack the intellect of Nas's Life Is Good or the money savvy swag of Rick Ross's masterful God Forgives I Don't, Based On A T.R.U. Story delivers both solid and some truly noteworthy moments. Sure, there are some humorous, `stupid' cuts that could have easily been on Waka Flocka Flame's most recent Triple F Life: Fans, Friends & Family, but there are also some surprising, head-nodding ones too.

"Yuck!" opens the effort with a dramatic, dark and malicious sound. After the orchestra setting is established with flurries of strings, clapping synthetic snares serve as the percussive accompaniment to STREETRUNNER/Matthew Burnett's production masterpiece. 2 Chainz delivers a capable and compelling set of rhymes here, with a lengthy, though solid and explicit hook from none other than `Tunechi' (aka Lil Wayne).

"Crack" has a hard act to follow and it does so talking about, well `crack.' Well produced (Southside), the cut is less effective mainly due to the fact it is much simpler and more repetitive. It's not bad, but nor is it nearly as great as "Yuck!"

"Dope Peddler" samples Tom Lehrer's "The Old Dope Peddler" in interesting fashion. Due to a short first verse, the cut comes off repetitive due to the near succession of the repetitive hook: "Started with an OZ/end up riding fo' deep/pull up to the club..." Regardless, "Dope Peddler" is enjoyable enough without spoiling listeners.

"No Lie," featuring Drake, is solid, featuring Drake's quasi-rap/sung vocals on the hook. Produced by Mike-Will-Made-It and co-produced by Marz, the production begins a bit mellow and understated, erupting into an edgier sound. Edgy would characterize where 2 Chainz's mind is at throughout (`no lie' for sure). Drake as usual sells the profanity-laced hook with such grace, if there is such a thing.

"Birthday Song," featuring Kanye West easily graces the top three of Based On A T.R.U. Story. Produced by Sonny Digital and co-produced by West, "Birthday Song" is quirky enough to eliminate predictability, which is a plus. 2 Chainz get's things rolling with an epic hook following a random intro: "They ask me what I do and who I do it for/and how I come up with this ___ in the studio... When I die bury me inside the Gucci store..." While 2 Chainz's verse is fine, West out raps him in a fine second verse. The two MC's join forces for the final verse.

"I'm Different" doesn't compete in the same league as "Birthday Song," unsurprisingly. Dijon "DJ Mustard" McFarlane's production is great regardless, yielding a clean and minimalist sound. 2 Chainz vocal production is as well executed as it has been the entirety of the album, which is another highlight. Regardless, "I'm Different" doesn't have the `juice' of "Yuck!," "No Lie," or "Birthday Song."
"Extremely Blessed," featuring and produced by The-Dream (Terius Nash), competes much better with the best. While it is a notch below, The-Dream paints a softer, gentler palette for 2 Chainz to `paint' upon. The-Dream sings so `chivalrously': "Honey complexion/body of a goddess/22s on the Lexus, named Alexis/By the way of Texas/Big face Rolexes...She's extremely blessed..." 2 Chainz couldn't be outdone of course: "Give us this day our daily bread/if you a chicken head, go somewhere and lay some eggs." Alrighty then.

"I Love Dem Strippers" is one of them `stupid' tracks that works. Having Nicki Minaj assist on a verse certainly helps, particularly when she can hang with any male MC. The hook is `dumb,' but a good `dumb' making "I Love Dem Strippers" worth the listen. Listeners shouldn't lose too many brain cells on this one.

Any lost brain cells are atoned for on the excellent "Stop Me Now," featuring Dolla Boy. Featuring excellent interpolation of "Nothing Can Stop Me" and opting for soulful, dusty drum programming as opposed to southern pummeling drums, "Stop Me Now" has more `class' about it. 2 Chainz kills the hook, even managing to reference Cindy Lauper of all people (she must be proud).

"Money Machine," produced by Drumma Boy (of Young Jeezy fame in particular), is another production highlight if nothing else. The cut itself is good though not nearly as great as the best, particularly the tour de force that proceeds it.

"In Town," featuring Mike Posner (co-produced by him and Lil Ronnie) is valedictory. Beautiful, soulful, salacious all in one, "In Town" is the unexpected triumph of Based On A T.R.U. Story aside from say "Birthday Song." Posner sings lovely accompanied by chordal piano, even at his most overt (and it is overt). 2 Chainz's raps work well, though he'd probably even assert Posner steals the show.

"Ghetto Dreams" in soulful fashion gives guests John Legend and Scarface respective moments. The old-school sound is a perfect follow-up to the bedroom talk of "In Town." The album end's fitting (or not so fittingly) in `stupid' fashion with "Wut We Doin?," a club-track produced by Mike-Will-Made-It and Marz. It's OK, but "Ghetto Dreams" would've been a fine coda.

Overall, Based On A T.R.U. Story is a solid introduction for 2 Chainz. The more creative cuts work better than the clubbier ones, which causes some unevenness. That said, there are no huge overt misses. Overall, 2 Chainz is off to a good start. Broaden some rhymes and horizons next go around AND call Mike Posner back for a repeat and he's on his way.
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on August 17, 2012
2 CHAINZZZZ!!! Reigning from Atlanta, Georgia, Tauheed Epps aka Tity Boi has been putting in work over the past decade. Some people might be unaware that 2 Chainz is actually one half of the group Playaz Circle, a group that tasted a brief success with their street hit "Duffle Bag Boy" feat. Lil Wayne coming 5 years ago. So needless to say 2 Chainz has been around a lot longer than some people may think. The year 2012 has been a very productive year for the former DTP artist, being the hot collaborator for many of todays hottest artists, appearing on practically everybodies songs as well as releasing a large mass of mixtapes he finally dropped his major label debut Based on A T.R.U. story. When I listen to 2 Chainz my expectations of him as a rapper are pretty low. I would never expect high calibur lyricsm, or thought provoking storylines when he raps, however there is one thing that 2 Chainz does have that many other MC's lack, and that is charisma. 2 Chainz is a grown man at the age of 36, so whenever he speaks it feels authentic and it never sounds like he is trying to impress anybody. The only probably is 2 Chainz (to me anyways)doesn't really have anything interesting to say. His music is defined as Trap Muzik, a southern style of Hip Hop that relies on hard hitting bass and aggressive snares. This type of music is nothing new, however on this album it is a much more glossy and defined trap sound with a mix of pop and soul samples.

Based On A T.R.U. Story is an album compiled of radio singles, which is not a problem for its commercial purposes, but as an album this album doesn't express who 2 Chainz is as a person which is a real problem. All I got out of 2 Chainz is mainly drugs, women, money and violent activities which is what horribly stereotypes the genre of Hip Hop. Again, I do not hold 2 Chainz to a high standard, what I expected from him is pretty much what I recieved, so I wasn't surprised with how extremely derivative this album was compared to just about 70-80% of other southern hip hop artists. But what I do like about this album is that it does completely what its supposed to do and its not getting attached to words such as classic or album of the year because its not that kind of album, and its not trying to be. My personal favorites of the album is "No Lie" feat. Drake a great catchy song thanks to hook man Drizzy. "Birthday Song" feat. Kanye West, a pretty lengthy song with a nice hard beat with a repetitive hook but fun lyrics. The song with the best productions are probably "Stop Me Now" featuring his Playaz Circle half with a great soulful sample. The rest of the album is filled with the same chauvunistic crap that I hate about hip hop of today. However, Hip Hop doesn't always have to be super deep, or super lyrical, this album is fun and thats perfectly fine. If you like southern trap music with car bumping productions and catchy repetitive hooks than this album is perfect for you. As for me, this album is what it is and I cannot discredit 2 Chainz for his hardwork to getting where he is at , and if this is his art than good for him, but I probably will not look forward to another 2 Chainz album from here on out.
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on March 19, 2013
2 Chainz is one of the hottest rappers in the game right now. After a big breakthrough with the Kanye-run G.O.O.D. Music, he's been seen on some big songs, most notably is Kanye West's "Mercy". One thing is for sure with his debut album, he's been able to appeal to the mainstream market with decent production and some good guest features. He's got a very unique flow, for better and for worse. Is all of his success deserved though? Not really.
2 Chainz dropped his first single "No Lie". It was taken with good reception from fans and critics alike, all bundled with good sales numbers. "No Lie" features Drake, and let's be honest, the song really wouldn't be very good without him. The production was done well but 2 Chainz's rushed flow is only bearable for the time he's on the track, it would be a hard song to take down if it wasn't for Drake. "Birthday Song" was his second song and it features Kanye West. 2 Chainz dominates the song as Kanye almost seemed like an afterthought, which is good for 2 Chainz because it shows that he can hold down a big song like this on his own. In fact, Kanye doesn't do a lot for the song. I'm a huge Kanye fan, but his production and verse weren't at the top of his game. The song overall is decent but at times it feels like a collection of songs stapled together.
Leading up to the album and after the release, we heard the singles "I Luv Dem Str*ppers", "I'm Different", and the kind of single "Yuck". "I Luv Dem" sounds like another generic rap song that any other mediocre rapper would release with a forgettable verse from Nicki Minaj. "I'm different" is actually somewhat refreshing, 2 Chainz goes solo on the song and does a really good job holding it down by himself. The song stands out as one of the highlights on the album due to the unique simple piano-based instrumentals. "Yuck" sounds like it was ripped off from somebody else, but I'm still yet to find that out for sure. It's kind of an odd mix with the rest of the album, as it features a terrible verse from Lil Wang. Overall a decent song even though the lyrics make less than no sense.
After the four (five?) singles there is almost nothing about this album that makes it memorable or even likable for that matter. The songs "Crack" and "Dope Peddler" are the only songs that demand any sort of attention whatsoever. The rest of the album, more specifically the second half of the album just blends together and gets somewhat boring. What makes this debut even less impressive is the fact that 2 Chainz produced absolutely no songs on the album. He just did some mediocre rapping to all of the songs and called it his own.
2 Chainz has a long way to go before reaching the top. According to his Twitter feed, he's got an epic album coming up within the next few months but I'll have to hear it to believe it. This is definately an album that you'll just want to pick and choose your songs instead of buying the whole album.

5/10
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on January 29, 2013
Some of the production is good, lyrics are elementary, ignorant and wack. Save your money and your brain cells. Cant believe people would actually consider buying this crap.
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on December 31, 2014
I love this album but the vinyl was terrible, it sounded like a 5 year old made it. When ever he says a word with S in it , it is very staticy. I have also played all of my other vinyl to make sure my sound system was working correct and it is.
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on October 5, 2012
[...]

Well wasn't this one a total displeasure and a general annoyance from all angles. There is a scarceness of substance, 2 Chainz is heavily annoying, and the production delivers nothing new. The production is handled by the typical names you would hear from the South, delivering heavily synthesized beats with heavy bass and slow tempo, ideal for clubs and such. The beats deliver a similar feel throughout, but in a repetitive way. 2 Chainz performs terribly with his annoying flow and his consistency in delivering lines that have minimal connection and generally barely make any sense. The content consists of money, swag, and bitches...and that is about it. The only thing I enjoyed was the quick hats on the production; the album blatantly sucks.
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on February 15, 2013
I was actually reluctant to get this album. I had been living out of the country for the last three years and was a bit out of touch with what was hot. But my sister turned me on to 2 Chainz - "I'm Different", and I definitely am DIFFERENT! So I figured I'd give him a try. As far as I'm concerned it's a classic. There's nothing "plastic" or "manufactured" about it. He's just doing some real rapping over some really nice beats. When I'm feeling like 'cussin' somebody out - I just put on some 2 Chainz - get it out of my system - and go back to be the nice, "normal" guy that I typically am .... :-)
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on September 29, 2012
this has to be by far the worst CD ive ever heard in my entire life. this guy makes waka and lil b sound like common and talib. I was optimistic about it so I decided to give it a chance, worst idea i ever had in my life then again what should you expect from a grown man who wears skinny leg jeans and uses the word cranack in his rhyme scheme plz for the love god do not buy or listen to this c"rap" if anything have a petition signed to have his vocal cords removed ....now im off to listen to some common, talib, and KRIT to wash the this ignorance from my mind
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on February 9, 2014
2 Chainz's TRU story album is simply... YUCK! and by yuck i mean it's sick. His opening song has one of the best beats I have heard and it flows really well. the rest of the album is great too. highly recommend this album for all hip-hop and rap fans.
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on December 24, 2012
He came with it on this cd. I mean, it's funny, yet, cool at the same time. I'm a 2Chainz fan..if you are, you will enjoy this cd. If you aren't, start with his mixtapes first and go from there! You'll still end up in the same place...the fan club! :)
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