Saturday, 26 October 2013

Eminem: MMLP2 - What are we expecting?

As most of you will know by now, Eminem is releasing his new album 'Marshall Mathers LP 2' on November 5th. The album serves as a sequel to his 2000 effort, 'Marshall Mathers LP'. So far, Eminem has released three songs from the album which are: 'Berzerk', 'Survival' and 'Rap God'. The cover art and track-listing are below:

Marshall Mathers LP 2 Cover Art
  1. Bad Guy
  2.  Parking Lot (Skit)
  3. Rhyme or Reason
  4. So Much Better
  5. Survival
  6. Legacy
  7. Asshole (Feat Skylar Grey)
  8. Berzerk
  9. Rap God
  10. Brainless
  11. Stronger Than I Was
  12. The Monster (Feat Rihanna)
  13. So Far....
  14. Love Game (Feat Kendrick Lamar)
  15. Headlights (Feat Nate Ruess)
  16. Evil Twin 

Since this, there have been an overload of opinions on the internet which vary wildly with some people thinking this will be a return to form for the artists, whereas others go so far as to call this album 'Recovery 2'.

So, what are we actually expecting?

A Return To Form?

With the album name, and the re-dying of his hair to blonde, this is clearly some kind of statement by the rapper. These factors have left many excited for the possibility of Eminem going back to his roots and straying from his more recent sound on projects like 'Recovery' and 'Relapse'.

However, with the three singles that have been released, I think it's probably safe to let these expectations go. Whilst there are redeeming factors in these singles, they sound nothing like the music on the original Marshall Mathers LP.  This is not to say that the album will be bad but just not too similar to the original.

So how will this album please his hardcore fans? Well, some of Eminem's best work has come from his great story-telling abilities. I feel this is what he has lacked in some of his recent music. Although he has shown glimpses of this with songs like 'Beautiful', he hasn't really exercised this regularly. Most people, when talking about their favourite Eminem songs, will most likely mention at least one of the following: 'Stan', 'Cleanin' Out My Closet', 'When I'm Gone', 'Like Toy Soldiers'. All these songs have one things in common: they tell great stories. Don't get me wrong, I love hearing Eminem spas out on songs like 'Rap God', but the right balance is needed.

This brings me on to my next point.

He Needs To Stop Trying To Please Everyone 

Here's the problem. Eminem listens too much to what people have to say these days. The best Eminem albums have come from when he had his 'Just Don't Give A Fuck' attitude. After his hiatus, Eminem released Relapse in 2009. A lot of people didn't like it because of the overuse of weird accents and silliness. So what did he do? Scrapped the planned 'Relapse 2' and, instead, created 'Recovery'. This album had Eminem having a much more serious attitude and the overall sound was a mixture of pop-rap and shouting. This then got criticized for being too mainstream. Hey, you can't please everyone, right? ...Right? Well Eminem seems to want to. Because it seems that this new album is to please the people who want less pop-rap and more old school Eminem.

I honestly think that these people need to understand one important thing:

Good Artists Are Always Producing New Sounds

Sure, new Eminem doesn't sound like old Eminem but any good artist is constantly changing and adapting their work. A lot of artists that fail to do this remain static and often get left in the dust.

Let me use an example of another rapper who I hold in high regard: Tech N9ne. Tech N9ne's music has also changed a lot over the past decade and because of this, his music and record label have grown extremely popular. However, there are still fans who want to hear the 'old Tech' and not the one who released 'All 6's and 7's' and 'Something Else'.

So with this, its clear that artists need to change. I mean, who really wants to hear the same shit year after year?

Lets Just Wait And See

This will be the last time I even sit down and think about this. I'm honestly sick and tired of hearing people whine and complain or do the opposite and worship everything the man does. Its time to just be patient and wait until the album comes out. I realize I may sound slightly hypocritical, but I like to think that the arguments I have made in this article are the results of actually thinking about it subjectively rather than being completely biased.

So lets wait until we hear the album and then express our opinions. I may post what I think here once the album has been released. Until then, see ya.

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