Mark Fury – Better Late Than Never (EP Review)
One of my favorite rising talents in the underground scene, Mark Fury, just released his 3rd full project, Better Late Than Never. I met Mark Fury on the ScrillaGang Trap Tour In 2018 when he was with the rap/production group Drinkfirstt. At the time, he was known for his feature verses and lyrical depth in the group, but as a solo artist he is developing into a mature, humble, and thoughtful songwriter.
“Better Late Than Never” is Mark Fury’s first release since the drop of his sophomore album Therapy in June 2022. With this new project, he rises from a 9 month hiatus and sets the intention to inform the listener that it’s never too late to gamble on yourself. It’s never too late to let the world see your light shine, and to always confront and defeat the mental battles that can sometimes give you self-doubt.
In a world where we often feel clouded and unseen due to over-saturation and fear of ‘busting out’, it’s comforting to hear someone relate to that struggle. And it’s even more inspiring to see them reach success through that struggle and hear them talk about that journey. Mark Fury embodies that in this 4 song EP.
Fury starts the album with the properly titled “Off The Rip” freestyle produced by Jus Purp. Fading in with a beautiful sample of “Wishing on a Star” by Rose Royce and slidding into an uptempo production of pianos, synths, and 808’s, Jus Purp put Mark Fury’s pen to the test.
As opposed to the rest of the album, Mark Fury lets his locks swing, drops the humble bag, and fires off the album with a freestyle and even shouts out all the pivotal people in his circle. Fury definitely answered Purp’s challenge to ‘snap off’ on this production and made it a fun opener.
Piggy backing from the energy of “Off The Rip”, the project keeps pace with the high energy, bar-heavy drill of “Trained To Go” which is also produced by Jus Purp. Once again, starting off with a gentle piano intro then slowly building as Mark Fury picks up pace , “TTG” gives you a greater perspective of Mark Fury’s lyrical ability and being able to take that and mix it with a catchy cadence and make hot track.
On top of fire production and lyricism, Mark Fury hits the topic of staying solid in your humble truth, but knowing when it’s time to stretch and flex and ‘go for gold’:
“I’m forever ten toes ain’t no fear up in my heart/ living legend in the making so I gotta play it smart/ I’m forever ’bout my art so I gotta leave my mark/plus i know that clock ticking so I gotta shoot the rock!”
As an artist myself, this was a #GxldApproved reaffirmation to ‘shoot the jay…SHOOT IT!’ as said by the great Dave Chappelle acting as Prince in the classic ‘Chappelle’s Show’ skit.
As the EP comes to a close, Mark Fury switches the production tempo, as Colorado producer Eli Alexander takes control of the soundscape. “Sokka” is the first introduction to a slower-paced melody and even sheds light on Mark Fury’s vocals with the smooth, thumpy, harmony of the hook. ‘Big Fury’ taps into his inner Childish Major and mixes harmony and trap sound with depth, confidence, and introspection.
Mark Fury had a stint in Colorado and you can tell that is a strong influence on the track. Being out on the road, making moves, and keeping tunnel vision on the mission; which we can see is manifesting.
Closing the album is “Real”. This one is for deep listening. Mark Fury gives us a peak into the insecurities and questions he has about ‘real love’. He poses hard, thought provoking questions about the authenticity of the love people give him-from romance, family and friends, to fans and comrades in his journey as an artist.
Do people love you while you’re down and is it really real love when they see that you’re ‘up’?
Regardless, we have to break the mold, keep our eyes on the prize, and take the gamble to not live in fear despite feeling uncertain and distant from the people around us. This contemplative track is for anyone that has experienced unrequited love and question who is truly really in their corner.
“Wonder if I fall off would they do me like that? / would they stick around? Or would they leave after the fall? / See I can’t mess around now, I can’t give you my heart/ cuz I’ve been broken and scarred/watched it all fall apart/ yea I been searching for love/ but still can’t get pass the start/ cuz what’s a man supposed to do, when there’s no one in your corner and ain’t no one to vent to, when you live life as a loner?”
Detrimental insecurities we all go through when we are on the road to finding purpose.
In totality, I am beyond impressed and proud to hear Mark Fury’s Better Late Than Never. To see where Mark Fury began, in comparison to where he is, this album shows growth, maturity and a heightened level of self-awareness from the artist.
The dichotomy of production between Jus Purp and Eli Alexander created a versatile back drop for Fury to give the listener a fun and confident, yet raw and humble look into the components that make Mark Fury the man and artist he is today.
Look out for Mark Fury as he will be hitting stages in Charleston this year! Stream “Better Late Than Never” and tap in with this #GxldApproved artist!