The possibilities for love in the time of 2 Chainz are nearly endless. The Atlanta rapper seems to exist in a warped gangster funhouse, taking the conventions of tough-talking rap and turning them on their ear, injecting a dose of absurdity into the gravitas of rappers of yore.
Take his insane new video for his single "Birthday Song," for example. Shot in Yonkers, the video depicts what might be the best birthday party ever, a cadre of off-kilter moments filling the clip. Everyone looks somber, even as midgets are running around them. A child dressed as 2 Chainz raps for a couple bars. There is a woman covered in frosting. Later, a cake shaped like a woman's behind is prominently featured. A clown is assaulted, and then sent down a slip-n-slide. Perhaps the most winning element to 2 Chainz's persona is his dancing, which looks suspiciously like those of Elaine from Seinfeld.
"Birthday Song" is from Based On A T.R.U. story, Chainz's promising but ultimately flawed debut album. He won the support of Kanye West, who allowed him to bat clean-up on his single "Mercy." Chainz returns the favor here, and Kanye rides a bike up to the party while very aggressively rapping about nonsense.
These men seem to understand the absurdity of a song like "Birthday Song" implicitly, their straight-faced braggadocio thrown into relief by the mayhem whirring around them. Pop music needs full-bodied singles such as "Birthday Song" right now, and a song such as this deserves a requisitely nuts video. Pop-rap has a promising future, as long as guys like 2 Chainz are steering the ship on a zig-zag course.
Check the strongly worded clip over at YouTube.