Label: Def Jam South, Island Def Jam, Universal Records

One of hip-hop's most revered legends received a mid-career boost via Def Jam in the early 2000s. With the aid of a few classic Kanye West production assists and a killer Nas verse, Scarface managed to release a record in the new millenium that stands with some of his greatest solo work of the early '90s. From the noir-like "In Cold Blood" to the Roberta Flack-sampling reminiscence "My Block," 'Face's gravitas seemed to only increase with age, his world-weary vocals a hard-fought sign of his wisdom. - David Drake