on 22 May 2009
What a massive comeback album! From the fast-paced lyrical prowess of "3 a.m." to the almost pop-friendly "Crack a Bottle" which features rap heavyweights Dr. Dre and 50 Cent. Favourite songs on the album have got to be: "Hello", "Same Song & Dance", "Beautiful" and the first single "We Made You". Only disappointing factor on the album for me is the inclusion of "My Mom" - which, in my humble opinion, is a disatrous attempt from Slim Shady to verbally attack his mother (whether it's true or false what he sings). Worth buying definitely! Better than Encore and D12 World but nowhere near as a masterful and compelling as The Marshall Mathers LP. Long live you Em, you rule man!
on 22 May 2009
Having first really got into Em just before Encore I had to go backwards to experience his previous work. From then TSSLP became my favourite with TMMLP following just behind. I thought that the eminem show was good but not there with either of the 2 previous albums, however I felt that encore was as good as the eminem show.
This album is very similar to TSSLP in terms of Em's feelings and the way he expresses them, but for me RELAPSE cannot be compared to any of his other albums. It is mind blowing, terrifying, inspiring, homophobic and controversial all at the same time; but in a different way from the rest of his work.
RELAPSE is not for everyone, many long time slim shady fans will hate it and others will name it his best album he's ever made. Personally I think that this is an album worth of legendary status but that it will never achieve it due to its lack of chart toppers, a must buy for any Em or hip hop fan. One thing is for certain.
Slim Shady, Ken kaniff and Eminem are back; in that order.
on 5 June 2009
I've never really been a fan of Eminem, I remember when he first hit the charts and my brother instantly became obessed with him, even dying his hair bleach blond, I really never liked him much, it was all too, well childish for me, as crazy as that sounds.
But I heard this album and at first I wasn't sure, it had decent beats and it wasn't until I relistened to it and actually listened to what he had to say that I started to enjoy this artist.
Every song on the album is decent, I usually find myself skipping certain songs on most albums I buy but it wasn't the case here.
Songs like "My mum" I expected to be like "Is he still going on about her?" but I actually enjoyed the song due to the beat, rather then the lyrics.
Songs like "Beautiful", "Hello", "Stay Wide Awake" and "Underground" are truly great to listen too.
For me, this album shows that Marshal has been through somthing, he has been changed by it, he's not the same old rebellious kid rapper thats looking for attension that I always saw him as.
He's changed his style and I like it, I'm not into rap or hip hop really, but this is an album that will be on my CD rack for years to come.
on 18 May 2009
Albums like this make you realise that there's so little originality in hip hop.
Eminem has been gone so long we havent had anything to compare current music to.
Eminems lyrics, flow and wordplay are absolutely unmatched. Yes he's rapping about drugs again but this is him speaking on his own experience, not only that he's fantastic at creating these fictional concepts and adding the perfect blend of humour.
His compound rhymes are brilliant like on on 'Same Song and Dance' where he rhymes 'I've been feeling you ooh ooh girl you sexy little gal you /
Hold that pill any longer it'll get sentimental value / Come-on toots, give me the valium alleyoop... / I'll slam dunk it in your mouth til you puke'.
The best song for me though is 'beautiful' where Eminem lays down the fact that as much as we know about him we still cant claim to really know or understand him, but he goes further and says this works both ways, he cant claim to really know anything about us and when all said and dont we all have our own challenges and if we walked in each others shoes for a while we'd understand.
Get the album, it's a keeper.
on 6 July 2014
Okay, this will take a while to both write and read but I am going to explain what each track is like and my opinion (also a rating out of 5 for each track). Usually I wouldn't bother with reviews but I want to help people with deciding whether to buy it or not.
I'll start off by saying that there is not a track that I dislike on this CD, they are all great and lyrically genius, my top tracks would have to be (In order of the order on the CD) Bagpipes from Baghdad, Hello, Same Song & Dance, We Made You, Stay Wide Awake, Old Time's Sake, Déjà Vu and Beautiful. I'm a little disappointed that My Darling and Careful What You Wish For didn't make it onto the regular RELAPSE CD, but nonetheless still a great album!
First Em starts of with Dr. West (skit), a drug related skit (No surprise after his drug problem). In this skit Em meets with his rehab doctor (Dr. West) right before he's discharged (from Rehab). But things take a turn as Marshall realizes that there are still some hidden demons within him from the past (SPOILER ALERT) and then wakes up, realizing it was just a dream. I think this a great way to start off his album, showing you that he is still old Slim Shady full of hidden demons which jump upon you during each and every song, from 3 a.m. when Slim appears as murderous as ever to Underground where Marshall raps about how "rehab is for quitters". 4/5
Second is his first song and second official single on RELAPSE. In this song Eminem becomes his alter ego Slim Shady and raps from his point of view as he becomes a serial killer... and he killed this s**t (no pun intended). Perfect way to return to the rap game as Slim and show his not a changed man "Still Shady Inside" (Quote from Evil Twin). 4/5
No 3 on RELAPSE is My Mom, a long awaited record that Em promised to do "Make a Record about doing drugs and name is after her" (Quote from My Name Is). It claims how his drug habit stemmed from the fact that his mom forcefed him pills as a child. I personally think this is a better track than most people say it is, I think it's his worst track on this CD but i still really like it. He is a lyrical genius and I feel people don't respect this song enough. 2/5
4 is Insane, in this track Em alleges that his stepfather molested him (although he later claimed that this never really happened just that he made this song to gross people out, hate to tell you em but you've done better at grossing people out in earlier records). At first I disliked this song because of the theme, but then I listened closer to the lyrics and then appreciated the absolute lyrical skill used in this track. 4.5/5
5 is Bagpipes from Baghdad, This is a slight dis on Nick Cannon, but is aimed more so at his lasting lust for Mariah Carey. This song does (of course) have a 'familiar' theme of murder and drugs (a regular theme throughout Eminem's works, especially RELAPSE). This song is sang in a Middle-Eastern accent during the hook and at times in the chorus. I really like this track (especially the first verse) it is very clever, and he refers to 'true' scenarios throughout the song of things that have happened between Mariah and himself, also refers to a few horror movies too (another revisited theme throughout RELAPSE). 5/5
6 is Hello, This is him basically reintroducing himself to us and the rap game and he also talks about drugs, alcohol, b*****s, sex... Y'know, the usual. I love this song, very clever like every song on RELAPSE. You can't buy RELAPSE and not listen to Hello. 5/5
Then is no 7 Tonya (skit), the crazy Slim Shady attacks another victim again, this skit fits in with the next track... (3/5)
Which is track 8: Same Song & Dance, in this song em–wait I mean slim shady raps about raping three women: Tonya (Who we are introduced to in the last track), Lindsay Lohan (He raps about her in the second verse) and finally Britney Spears (In the last and final verse). This song has a great beat and very clever (You're going to hear 'very clever' a lot), yet explicit lyrics. (What do you expect from an Eminem song, and a song about raping as well) 5/5
Next is Song 9: We Made You, this song is quite a pop friendly song (As is at least one song on each of his albums) in the styling of The Real Slim Shady from The Marshall Mathers LP. Both amazing songs, I love original hip-hop, you cant beat it... But I gotta admit, Em does a f*****g good job at it (swearing to emphasize). 5/5
After is Medicine Ball which is track 10/20 on RELAPSE. I could sum this up in one sentence: Eminem (as Slim Shady) raps about gay serial killers, his addiction to sleeping pills, sitting on Madonna, and pushing Christopher Reeves into Quicksand. So yeah great song. We have a lyrical genius in our midst! I don't know anyone who could fit all this into a song and make it good! 4/5
11 is Paul (skit). Basically if you didn't know this already, Em features two reoccurring skits in every album (except sslp and before): Paul Rosenburg and Steve Berman. Paul is a Music Manager from Detroit, Michigan, US. He is most well known for his association with hip hop artists Eminem (of course), The Knux, DJ AM, pop punk band Blink-182 and Action Bronson. 3/5
No 12 is Stay Wide Awake, Eminem describes a series of rape fantasies, the dark side, and mutilation of women. It's a great track, probably my favorite (from RELAPSE), the last verse is very smart as it actually goes backwards if you look closely at the lyrics. A must-listen-to! 5/5
Track 13: Old Times's Sake feat. Dr. Dre. Eminem (as Slim) and Dr. Dre rap about their favorite pastime: smoking chronic. Oh and there are also planes and b*****s involved. I love the way Slim starts (the Intro) as a captain, or "f*****g captain" as he says. He is mocking/parodying the typical announcements that pilots give before takeoff; the plane is an allegory for smoking weed, as they both get "high". 5/5
14: Must be the Ganja. In a tradition stemming back to his earliest albums, Eminem is always sure to include a "drug song" for your party mixes. Even though he was sober for the recording of this, he has plenty of experiences to draw back on in order to make this song. 4/5
15 is Mr. Mathers (skit). I think this is an absolutely PERFECT way to introduce Déjà Vu! It is unbelievable clever and leads in well with the theme and... and... just EVERYTHING! Oh and for any Six Feet Under fans out there: you might recognise the voice of the "Male Medic" as Matthew St. Patrick, who played the (major) role of Keith. 5/5
Now is track 16 a.k.a. Déjà Vu. This is an all time favorite of mine, This was the first song that I liked on RELAPSE, and that was When I first got into Eminem, so it's a song that reminds me of 2009 whenever I hear it. It basically documents his overdose and what lead up to it. It is basically a trip into the mind of an addict. 5/5
Then is 17. Beautiful. Considered by both fans and critics as the strongest off RELAPSE, "Beautiful" is the only song Eminem actually recorded during the hiatus between albums ENCORE and RELAPSE when he was not clean. His emotions here are clear: The addiction to drugs are sinking him into depression, and he feels trapped, as if there is not escape. Rehab isn't proving particularly helpful at pulling him out of this mood, either. By the end of the track, however, Eminem expresses more optimism and hope for the future. 5/5
Track 18 is Crack a Bottle feat. legends Dr. Dre & 50 Cent! This song went on to win the Grammy Award for Best Performance by a Duo or Group in 2010. Before it's official release on iTunes (used to drum up hype for RELAPSE), a reference track leaked. It featured Eminem performing Dre's verse first, then his, both of them being very similar to the final cut. He then performs a 3rd verse, rumoured to be ghostwritten for 50 Cent, who appears on the final track albeit with a completely different verse. 4.5/5
No 19 is Steve Berman (skit). Basically if you didn't know this already, Em features two reoccurring skits in every album (except sslp and before): Paul Rosenburg and Steve Berman. Em is visiting Steve Berman, the Interscope Records CEO he shot in the skit on The Eminem Show. 3/5
Finally is track 20: Underground. This song is a gem which is largely unappreciated, from and also (and equally) largely unappreciated album. Em uses this song to make a point: "Rehab is for quitters"!!!!!!! 4/5
So overall a great album 4.25/5. Definitely recommend buying!
So Eminem is back, 5 years since his last album. I'm glad he didn't retire after Encore but Relapse isn't quite the magnificent comeback I hoped for.
The album starts with a sinister sounding skit with Eminem checking out of rehab and then goes straight into 3am which is so dark it wouldn't sound out of place on the Marshall Mathers LP. There are plenty of other black Marshall Mathers moments the best being 'Same Song & Dance.' Slim Shady style black humour comes courtesy of tracks like 'My Mom' and 'Insane' but luckily there are none of the silly voices and 'comedy' accents of Encore. There is, of course the obligatory pop song for the masses with 'We Made You' which features impressive flow but quickly becomes irritating as did 'Without Me' and 'Just Lose It.' There is also an obligatory Dr. Dre collaboration on 'Crack A Bottle' which is balls'ed up by a very poor verse from 50 cent.
I have always been drawn to Eminem's more heartfelt stuff like 'Hailie's Song,' 'Mockingbird,' 'Spend Some Time' and 'Love You More' which was criminally left off Encore in favour of rubbish filler material like 'Puke' or 'Big Weenie.' The big 'Sing For the Moment' track on Relapse is 'Beautiful' which has excellent use of samples and great honesty in the lyrics.
So to sum up, is Relapse Eminem's best work yet? No, not quite. It's not as good as 'The Marshall Mathers LP' but it is significantly better than Encore. Encore had some great moments but too much poor quality in between. I'm not as sure what Relapse's big moment is but I suspect it will be a grower and a more mature overall listen. It's also good that the album isn't a showcase for Shady/Interscope up and comers like I feared it might be.
on 21 May 2009
Firstly, why people say "He tries too hard" is beyond me. He doesnt need to impress anyone, all he is doing is putting the music out there for his fans sake, to keep them entertained. He doesnt owe us anything. I think more people need to just accept the album for what it is, and to stop comparing to what they THOUGHT the album was gonna be like. These "fans" should be more thankful that he didnt die from his drug problems to be here today with more entertaining music.
The production on the album is better than previous albums. The way he plays with words and the rhymes has grown with every album, and he shows what a genius he is on this album. Whether he is still as creative in terms of storylines and themes, thats down to personal opinion.
Iv never played an album of his over n over n over n over again as much as i have with this album, so i guess that says alot already.
If you have liked ANY of his previous albums, ignore the reviews and just go out and buy the album and make your OWN decision. Dont be scared to admit you like it even if your friends dont! (they might be slightly insane)
I could go on much longer but theres not much point, except just believe in the hype surrounding this album cos it has truly been worth the wait after all these years.
on 13 June 2009
Eminem's new album, entitled Relapse, is a pleasure to listen to. The production is just as good, if not better, than that of his previous albums and the lyrical content is as always original, descriptive, rhythmic and of course hilarious.
Relapse is overall not as expletive as some of his previous work, but the lyrics are just as cutting edge nonetheless. I personally am fond of the majority of the tracks, the best ones being Beautiful, My Mom, Bagpipes From Baghdad, We Made You and Stay Wide Awake.
As with his previous albums, Relapse features several strange skits which intermittently occur every few tracks or so. They are, as always, a nice yet rather deranged touch to the album's overall sense of creativity and originality.
I rate this album as a well deserved 4 stars. I praise Eminem over other rappers for the sheer length of some of his verses, and as this album's tracks no doubt have shorter verse length averages than I would have hoped for, I rate the album as 4 stars rather than 5 stars.
As a long time Eminem fan, I consider Relapse to be a highly innovative work of art, and I look forward to his next album. I recommend any Eminem fan to buy this album.
on 11 May 2009
I almost feel obliged to lay out my Eminem credentials before submitting this review. Like a great many, I was a huge fan until D12 World and Encore, both of which lost me with silly accents, juvenile subject matter and a fixation more on controversy and messing around than on creating great music. The first two singles didn't inspire me with much hope; 'Crack A Bottle' is a poor song, inflicting yet more Fiddy on us all and so radio friendly that the legends of rap must have been turning in their graves. 'We Made You' isn't much better, and it wasn't until '3AM' that I really started paying attention. I have no desire to run Eminem down for the sake of it, but I don't have any motivation to say he's great when he's not, either. I'll judge what he does on it's own merits. Besides, Eminem has traditionally released the worst songs first, and this time round is no exception.
First of all, let's discuss the production. Dre really shines on this release; the production values and beats are crisp and drives the album on. Fingers crossed the long-awaited Detox will be as easy on the ears as the production on this release. We're mercifully spared a long list of Shady/Aftermath artists so it avoids becoming a promo CD for the label's latest cash cows. We do have to endure 50 Cent reminding us all why we jumped ship after 'Get Rich', but other than that, it's just Dre on one other track and that's it.
Now, the all important question; has Em returned to the flow, the anger, the wordplay and the hook that got those with some roots in this game excited back in the day? The answer, yes and no. There are flashes of both persona's here. Yes, there are too many lyrics delivered in the ridiculous and unwelcome 'weird accent' thing he mistakenly thought was so funny throughout Encore. There's also moments during which he stretches too far to say something 'edgy' (come on - Hannah Montanna? It doesn't compare to dropping it on Moby when everyone loved him, for example). Tracks like 'My Mom' are a little try-hard too, as if he's trying to recreate the content, not just the spirit, of all those years ago.
Yet there are also moments of true brilliance here, too. 3AM is exactly the kind of opener I was hoping for; it takes no prisoners, it's clever, it paints imagery and Em's flow is insane. 'Hello' is reminiscent of 'I'm Back' from The Marshall Mathers LP, and tracks like 'Same Song and Dance' and 'Underground' are Eminem on top form. So the question becomes, can the occasional drops in standards be overlooked, or are they part of what is ultimately an inconsistent, but promising, return to the spotlight? Well, that's for you to decide. From my perspective? It's brilliant. Even the songs that don't grab you first time around grow on you on repeated play. If you can overlook the two first singles and tedious fodder like 'Must Be The Ganja', what you have here is a solid release from one of the best lyricists in the game. Crucially, the answer to the question on every discerning rap fan's lips is: yes. It is much, much better than Encore.
Relapse is Eminem giving us flashes of why he became as big as he did. Fortunately, there are more than enough flashes to make this not only worthwhile, but the return of someone who has long been missed.
on 23 May 2009
Relapse: Marked as Eminem's/Slim Shady/Marshal Mathers triumphant return to main stream hip hop, Relapse is intended to show the world that Eminem's still got what it takes to make catchy and offensive songs that have a certain universal appeal. I think it almost hits the mark in this respect, with songs like `crack a bottle' and `we made you', which could of easily been on any other of Eminem's previous albums. But I think the real Genius of Relapse comes out in tracks like `same song and dance' `3.am', and `beautiful' where the darker said of Eminem comes out to play once again, proving that he still can shock people with disturbing yet technical lyrics which almost tell a kind of sadistic story. This is Eminem at his very best, makes me think back to classic tracks like `stan' and `mockingbird'. But overall I would say that Relapse is a good attempt even though some of the tracks are clearly filler and nothing special, if it showed more of the darker side of eminem and less of the catchy poppy side I think it would be been a lot better and maybe even verging on genius.