The title of Atlanta rapper 2 Chainz‘s fifth studio album, Rap or Go to the League, is a reference to the harmful perception that the one two routes out of a lifetime of crime and poverty are to both grow to be a well-known rapper or athlete. The title alone signifies a brand new degree of consciousness and amplified maturity, a minimum of transferring properly previous the larger-than-life celebration monster persona that made a few of his early songs multi-platinum hits. Whereas there are nonetheless moments of that strip-club bravado right here, these 14 songs are extra reflective and considerate than something 2 Chainz has turned in earlier than. Beats constructed on wistful soul samples make up tracks just like the Ariana Grande-assisted “Rule the World” or the autobiographical album opener, “Forgiven,” making a pervasive temper of introspection. Rap or Go to the League strikes between this emotional looking and bangers like “Momma I Hit a Lick” and bass-heavy flex-fests like “2 Greenback Invoice.” 2 Chainz calls out the large weapons on these tracks, with verses from Lil Wayne, E-40, and Kendrick Lamar, and elsewhere on the album he trades rhymes with Travis Scott, Kodak Black, Likelihood the Rapper, Younger Thug, and Ty Dolla $ign. The power of the album is its potential to discover extra critical themes with out shedding the enjoyable and swagger that the rapper made his identify on. Now in his early forties, it is smart that 2 Chainz‘s artwork is growing past hedonistic abandon to the touch on real-life considerations like household, society, and turning into an elder statesman of the rap sport. With out making any sort of heavy-handed declaration, Rap or Go to the League is a step ahead in 2 Chainz‘s artistry, and divulges sides of his character that had been beforehand tougher to see within the shadow of his monumental persona.