After the bombast of The Marshall Mathers LP and Eminem's well-noted use of sexual epithets, this kind of material is made more controversial because it actually rings true. From a brutal retort to his long-estranged and equally troubled mother ("Cleaning Out My Closets") to a surprisingly tender ode to his child ("Hailie's Song"), Eminem examines his life, loves, arrests, addictions, failures and successes with surprising insight, making this a funk-drenched hip-hop confessional well worth the hype. --Amy Linden
It's not the Eminem that most pop fans are used too, a more nasty, angry and intelligent side of his personality. The rhymes and the beats are second to none, makes you realise how dull and generic most commercial rap is these days.
Mathers realy shows off his incredible lyrical talent and rhyming skills on all the tracks, I'd go as far to say that all the tracks are worth listening too and even on repeated listens you shouldn't find yourself skipping tunes which is something I'd say can't be said for his previous albums. There's less collabarations with other artists and thank god there isn't too much D-12 on the album holding up the proceedings.
I wouldn't say there's really any stand-out tracks on the album, they're all on the same excellent level, but I also wouldn't say there's any tracks that manage to top for me his greatest tune 'The way I am' not necessarily a massive problem though as the album is a hell of a lot more consistent than previous albums.
Overall an excellent album that I highly recommend, if you've shunned Mathers to this day as being a pop wannabe then I really suggest you give this album a try, his lyrical talents are really 2nd to none and the production of the album is superb. A really angry and dark Shady is on offer with very few comedy tracks that I feel kinda held up the previous albums, hope to see more work to this quality by Mathers in the future.
Having bought the "My Name Is" cd single when it came out I kept away because of the hype but returned when I heard Sing For The Moment (track 12) which is the first song to make me actually listen for years - this is real - listen.
There is still the same take or leave interlude bits to make the album "feel" hard but sound "passe" but get over that and the tracks are birliiant.
I recomend this to anyone who remembers he anger of The Jam, the intellegence of Marillion, and has a teenage daughter. Listen with an open mind to the lyrics and then listen again - I defy you to stop clenching your fist.
Here is my track-by-track rating.
1. Curtains Up (Skit)
2. White America- A huge rock sounding track, which introduces the change of style. 7/10
3. Business - Catchy, funny and ever so slightly camp and obviously Dre produced 8/10
4. Cleanin Out my Closet - The most emotional song he has ever recorded. Stunning. 8.5/10
5. Square Dance - Again a change of style,
very southern sounding. Think Bubba Sparx..only better. 8/10
6. The Kiss (Skit)
7. Soldier- Dark and angry, production on this track is superb 8/10
8. Say Goodbye Hollywood - Another 'rockier' track. Technically this song is amazing.8/10
9. Drips - Eminem and his protégé Obie Trice rapping over slow beats. Charming song 7/10
10. Without Me - You've all heard this
one !!! 8/10
11. Paul Rosenburg (Skit)
12. Sing for the Moment - Superb. The song features a sample from Areosmith.One of the standout track. 10/10
13. Superman - Simply Brilliant. This is Eminem at his is best 9/10
14. Hailie's Song - A first he actually sings on this track, and he ain't bad. A bit slushy but still there's something about it I like. 7/10
15. Steve Berman (Skit)
16. When the Music Stops - D12 take to the mic. Slick and with powerful message. 8/10
17. Say what you Say- The 'Battle' record. A late addition to the album to coincide with Eminem's and Dre's lyrical battle with Jermain Dupre. Powerful. 8/10
18. Til I Collapse- The other standout track.Read more ›