Bravado has been the chitinous veneer that has armored the soul of hip-hop since its inception nearly four decades ago. What began with perspicacious MCs boasting about their lyrical prowess (or shaming a rival’s lack thereof) would sadly be distilled over the years into current radio-rap’s hyper-concentrated braggadocio, substance reduced to basically how much money (and with what level of indifference) one can spend in a club.
Thankfully, existing mostly out of sight of the Sauron’s eye of the corporate commercialization of mainstream rap music, there’s been a steady underground stream of rappers who still have something to say. Fans who prefer hip-hop that offers material to ponder instead of shallow club bangers can find a kindred soul in Fort Worth’s Therron Coleman, better known in the local hip-hop scene as Sage Mode Wrex.
“I always got A’s in school in literature and social studies,” Coleman said. “And rap is pretty much just applied literature and social studies – seeing the world and analyzing it and being able to express yourself in a certain way about it.”