Last year's hit "Throw Some D's" was a dazzling triumph of style over substance. With its spacious synth sample from Switch's "I Call Your Name" and Rich Boy's alien drawl, it made the usual hip-hop ode to rims, as well as its star-studded remix, sound refreshingly strange.
Of course, such massive success early on made the MC from Mobile, Alabama, ripe for claims that he is nothing more than a one-hit wonder. But he isn't -- and the continued input of Ludacris producer Polow Da Don on dirty R&B fusions like "On the Regular" and the menacing "Boy Looka Here" is a big reason why. Then again, Rich Boy's debut isn't any great leap forward. His thick-tongued rhymes about clubs, cars, and coochie still invite closer scrutiny than they deserve, but the former student of mechanical engineering has drawn up a disappointingly foolproof blueprint for success: talkin' slow and sayin' nothing.