Em has been pretty good with the surprises of late. Music to Be Murdered By – Side B includes 16 new tracks including features by Dr. Dre, Ty Dolla $ign, Skylar Grey and DJ Premier. A new music video for the song “Gnat” also accompanies the surprise release. GNAT is easily the best single on the album.
I have seen a number of reviews on the album that were negative. I feel if you are an old school Eminem fan you would be rather pleased with his efforts on the 2018’s Kamikaze & Music To Be Murdered By – Side B. Say what you want about Eminem but he will remain the lyrical genius of rap, nobody has had the spotlight on their opinions, stories and wordplay like he has. Every new album he releases I sit and dissect his every word, hopeful for some controversial reference to a celebrity, his past, his ex-wife Kim, his mother. With this album I was keen on hearing his opinions and wordplay around COVID-19, obviously. His penmanship & clever references still… remain unmatched.
Em’s ability to use the drama in his life to remain relevant continues, and I don’t mean that in a bad way. Real-life drama adds to a rapper’s relevance and gives them an edge. Just like it is now with the problematic ONEFOUR. The greats have all had a turbulence in their real life that could be utilised on the mic.
Em shows a lot of honestly in this album, we get a wholehearted apology on penultimate track “Zeus,” where he offers a sincere apology to Rihanna for an ugly leaked outtake on which he joked about her assault at the hands of Chris Brown. Later on in the song he confronts Snoop Dogg for some less-than-flattering comments. He also offers a warning to Drake and Migos that their period of untouchable popularity won’t last.
This album has a fun feel to it. Em isn’t trying to be everything to everyone or push political opinions. It doesn’t offer anything too new though, referring to troubled relationships, proving doubters wrong and obscene references… his ‘”go-to” move. I thought the single GNAT was the most modern-sounding, fresh production. More experimentation along the same lines of that song would have been very impressive. The majority of the beats produced by Em though, unfortunately, don’t offer much.
If you are a stan, like I am, It’s worth a few listens.