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2 Chainz & Lil Wayne - Welcome 2 Collegrove (Album Review)

Wednesday, 29 November 2023 Written by Jack Terry

Seven years on from the red-tape nightmare of ‘ColleGrove’, Lil Wayne and 2 Chainz are back together again, this time with both of their names on the marquee. ‘Welcome 2 Collegrove’ has been painstakingly assembled to make sure that the record is co-signed properly this time and Wayne’s face on the cover feels like a real show of “Yes, he's really on this one!”

Sure enough, Wayne’s involvement goes far beyond the scattered verses of ‘ColleGrove’. He's in the thick of every minute of this album, dispatching slick, silver-tongued bars that contrast with 2 Chainz’s typically more laid back meter.

But, whether it's in the silky smooth R&B of Transparency, the heavy bass of Crazy Thick or the mumble rap-leaning Millions From Now, the duo deliver an era-hopping performance that shows why they're thought of so highly. 

Building on the world they created on the original LP, the album is split into scenes, each one narrated by 50 Cent. The cherry on the cake is Wayne’s breathless verse-of-the-year contender on Oprah And Gayle, while Elsewhere is elevated by a universe of talent in Usher, 21 Savage and Rick Ross. 

Production from Havoc, Bangladesh and 30 Roc makes ‘Welcome 2 Collegrove’ sound rich, both in terms of its sonic weight and price tag, but no matter how much money has been thrown at this project over the years, there are occasional missteps. 

The separation of chapters doesn’t work because of jarring sequencing, and some beats feel hacked apart to make it work for each rapper. A slow down on G6 makes the divide between Wayne and Chainz feel massive, while Godzilla relies so heavily on AutoTune that it crumbles apart.

Overall, though, ‘Welcome 2 Collegrove’ is a testament to the power of friendship between two of rap’s modern masters. The respect and admiration that Lil Wayne and 2 Chainz hold for eachother is apparent, and they challenge one another to go harder and further at every opportunity. 


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