2 Chainz has been a staple in the game for over a decade, and with his latest album, Dope Don't Sell Itself, he proves that his relevance remains undeniable. His signature voice and raunchy style, matched with his expert-level beat selection, allow for his versatility to shine through, while his legend status nets him refreshing featured guests who never overshadow Chainz.
Loosely narrated with scripted hustler talk, the album's 12 tracks are held together by 2 Chainz's aura and voice more so than by melodic progression. The bouncy, BeatKing-produced "Pop Music" (featuring an in-form Moneybagg Yo) contrasts with the grimy "Vlad TV," yet 2 Chainz's hypnotic flow and humorous lyrical approach remain the underlying constant.
2 Chainz is a unique case within the scope of legacy acts. Upon changing his moniker from Tity Boi and going solo after 15 years in the duo Playaz Circle, the College Park, Georgia native maintained a strong presence with consistent output. He provided countless memorable hooks, star-making features and one-liners that either thrived due to being clever or missed for being too predictable, yet still yielded laughs for their self-aware ribs at mainstream rap's ridiculous boasts.
Seven albums deep, 2 Chainz has long perfected his brand. Rap hewn from the streets, his swagger is built on illicit deals and back alley personas, achieving enormous success and no small degree of success in the process. Trap's decade long arc to the top of the Billboard charts arguably falls in his shadow, with the rapper - real name Tauheed Epps - able to command respect from the upper echelons.