Label: Def Jam
Saving grace: "I'm Different"
Clunker: "Money Machine"
In 2012, it was hard not to root for 2 Chainz. He was just a lovable guy: He was charismatic, funny, and his success was such a longtime coming you knew he was loving every second and appreciated every moment. His run really began in 2011, however, when he released mixtapes like Codeine Cowboy and T.R.U. REALigion. The later of which featured his hit "Spend It" which featured everything we loved about him, like the unforgettable Similac line.
By the time 2012 rolled along, he became one of the most in-demand rappers, doing guest spots for G.O.O.D. Music, A$AP Rocky, Juicy J and anyone else willing to pay his supposed $100,000 fee. But maybe he should have kept the best verses for himself. By the time his album rolled around, he just didn't have the same muster. His flow seemed a bit exhausted, like he had stretched himself too thin. The wit of bars like his Similac line were replaced with flat announcements like, "She got a big booty so I call her Big Booty." Ultimately, we were happy Chainz got his moment to shine and we loved singles like "I'm Different" and "No Lie" but we wish he could have made more of his moment. —Insanul Ahmed