Brad Terrence Jordan, better known by his stage name Scarface, is a rapper and producer from Houston, Texas. Born on November 9, 1970, Scarface grew up in South Acres, a neighborhood on Houston’s south side, where he was raised by his mother and grandmother. Scarface began his music career in the late 1980s as a member of the Geto Boys, known for their controversial lyrics and gritty, hardcore sound.
Scarface’s debut solo album, Mr. Scarface is Back, is a legendary piece of work that launched one of Hip Hop’s most esteemed careers. Having gained success with Geto Boys, Scarface took a step forward in his career and delivered an album that was dark, hardcore, and cinematic.
Right from the opening track, “Mr. Scarface,” the listeners are introduced to Scarface’s aggressive flow and deep voice that set the mood for the entire album. The album is a vivid portrayal of life in the ghetto, and Scarface’s honesty and storytelling ability bring out issues like drug addiction, gang violence, and police brutality with brutal sincerity.
“Diary Of A Madman” arguably is the album’s most chilling song, which explores the mind of a psychopath. Scarface’s storytelling ability is on full display as he raps from the perspective of the killer, detailing his descent into madness and the brutal murders he commits. The beat is haunting, with an unsettling drumbeat that only adds to the track’s eerie atmosphere. The song serves as a stark reminder of the potential risks and dangers of feeling isolated and disconnected from society. “Born Killer” and “Murder By Reason Of Insanity” are similarly hard-hitting tracks.
“Money & The Power” is a powerful song that captures the essence of Scarface’s rags-to-riches story. Scarface’s relentless drive to succeed through wealth and power is a universal theme that many people can relate to, making this song one of the highlights of the album.
The absolute standout track on the album is the atmospheric “A Minute to Pray and a Second to Die”. Over a haunting sample of Marvin Gaye‘s “Inner City Blues”, Scarface delivers chilling verses about the tragic neverending cycle of violence. “Life goes on in the streets of my hood when you die / But some cry, and gets by, while others choose to wonder why / His life was took at such an early age / A young n**** who lived in a rage died by the gauge…”
Mr. Scarface is Back is an exceptional solo debut that showcases Scarface’s remarkable talent as a lyricist and storyteller. The beats are atmospheric and perfectly complement Scarface’s unfiltered rhymes. The album provides a raw reflection of the harsh realities of life in impoverished communities, and Scarface’s honest depiction of these issues has earned him a place among Hip Hop’s most respected emcees.
As time has passed, Mr. Scarface is Back has stood the test of time and remains a classic Hip Hop album. It’s a gritty, raw, and unapologetically real masterpiece that will continue to engage generations of music lovers for years to come. Scarface’s influence on the genre is undeniable, and this album marked the beginning of a career that has spanned decades. His impact can be heard in the music of many rappers who have come after him, cementing his status as a Hip Hop legend.
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