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Relapse - Eminem

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29 Reviews

Genre: Hip-Hop & Rap - Gangsta & Hardcore / Artist: Eminem / Explicit Lyrics / Audio CD released 2009-05-18 at Mercury

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    Your dooyooMiles Miles

    29 Reviews
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      05.11.2011 04:22
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      Excellent album that is extremely addictive, and that was overlooked in its technical aspects.

      After five years of solo absence from the genre, Eminem was contemplating how to come back, how to reinvent himself and how to come out with a new style and sound.

      Despite Em himself saying he'd 'gone back' to his old ways, hence one meaning of the title (relapsing to what he used to be), 'Relapse' sounds completely different from anything else in his catalogue. And I LOVE it. He may very well of tried to emulate shocking people in a major way again but how he went about it with his writing and rapping here was entirely new.

      As always, the album opens with a bang and my my, what a bang it opens with. You spin this CD and after the conceptual skit to kick things off, your mind is blown with "3 a.m." - easily one of his strongest tracks, lyrically, in years.

      Eminem pretty much embodies the mind of a serial-killer throughout this album, but it's less constricted than that. He may be using extreme violence and psychopathy as an excuse for vivid lyricism and wordplay (as it's automatically vivid and therefore a short cut to expressive, graphic writing), but it's more... him just letting his mind free, and the pen morphing the direction.

      I think the best word to describe this album would be "abstract".

      After describing the depths of depravity his mind can sink to on the opening track, we go into "My Mom" which sounds like somewhat of an attempt to recreate "Brain Damage". Which would make sense since he said he went back and listened to 'The Slim Shady LP' for inspiration.

      Lyrically, Eminem is SO focused on this album, and his rhyming and flows totally encapsulate obsession to the nth degree. And if you're an obsessive person yourself, the sound of such obsession, is extremely satisfying to your brain. His flows are so on-point, so tight and rhythmic.

      Em had wanted to prove to himself he could rhyme to this degree again and so made 'Relapse' the way it is partially for a personal exercise too. Which I think, should always be the reasoning behind an artist doing anything. An artist should only ever try to please themselves. Then, whoever likes it works in a Darwinian sense - people who like / love it will be drawn to and treasure the work. People who dislike / hate it, will disregard and move on from it.

      This is why this album showed such promise to me as a fan. No way in hell did I expect something like this after 'Encore'. Em had crossed into the mainstream in such a way that... despite never losing his eye for detail and passion for technique, his subject-matter had become concerned with public opinion to a degree I thought there was no going back on. He really surprised me with 'Relapse'.

      It's a shame that this album will now probably go down as his major failure considering how awe-inspiring and brilliant the lyricism is and how satisfying and moulded the flows are. Dr. Dre produces his best beats in years here too, and Em rides them with a bombastic flair.

      Em's writing on this album is so detailed and nuanced. It's a real progression from his earlier work in the sense that, he began to write like a true writer. He was gleeful in his psychopathy, and there was artistic flicks in his lyricism, each song being like an audio painting.

      The only real duds on this album to me, are the tracks that were not made for the album. The 'Relapse' style is so distinct that anything out-of-place sticks out like a sore thumb. And I'm speaking of course of "Beautiful" and "Crack a Bottle". Neither of these tracks were made for 'Relapse' and it's painfully obvious.

      Em says that "Beautiful" was put there to remind him of his addiction but I personally think that it was a safety track. I think Interscope intended to use it as a single from day one and due to it being emotional and closer to Em's older material, they banked on it hitting home if the 'Relapse' material didn't. And I think Em put it there so that if the 'Relapse' material didn't strike a chord with the fans, he would go in the direction of "Beautiful".

      Which, he then did. After 'Relapse', we go to 'Recovery'. Which is? an album full of rock samples, sung hooks and introspective content. I think it's pretty obvious what was done, it was calculated.

      I was personally anticipating 'Relapse' 2 so so much and think it was probably an instant classic. I'm basing that purely off of how good the first is, and the idea of saving the best to last. Clearly Em wouldn't save the weaker of the two albums for last would he. I think it's a tragedy he binned 'R2' to appease fans and pander. He went back on his word and contradicted himself.

      Either way, despite the two dud tracks I mentioned, this album is a near-classic to me. Without those, it would be near-perfection to me. Top to bottom. The style is so consistent and satisfying and the theme and imagery is so appropriate given that the songs feel like drugs to the brain.

      If you love rhymes, and tight flows, this album is for you.

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      01.08.2011 12:36
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      An album i'd reccomend

      I have been a big fan of Eminem ever since I was given the Encore album as a christmas present a few years ago. After Eminem took a 4 year break from his career due to a drug addiction and writer's block, he released the hugely hyped up Relapse album, everyone was talking about it and everyone was rushing out to buy it, and I bought it straight away because I thoroughly enjoyed his other albums and he is the most talented rapper alive in my opinion.

      I paid around £15 when I bought this, as I bought it when it was first released (2009), however it is now £9.99 on HMV's website. Even though I paid a bit extra it is a good price in my opinion for the amount of tracks on the disc - there is only one disc included. The 20 tracks includes 5 skits, so all in all there are 15 full length songs which averages at less than a quid each - not bad! On the Deluxe Album there are 2 extra full length songs. Each song has a different vibe to it. Some are on the playful, witty and laughably ironic side, while others are very emotional and relatable. I am not a big fan of the skits, they do make me cringe a little, but you will hear more about that later.

      As I said before I am happy with the amount I paid as i've listened to it almost every day - i've even copied it onto my iPod as there's lots of good songs that get me hyped up before running and spur me on while i'm running. It's also a good album to just stick into the CD player and relax to, although only a few songs have a gentle, slower feel to them - most are pretty manic but it's still worth listening to them while relaxing as you get to hear the lyics better and therefor understand the song better as some of the songs have a detailed story to them. This album was worth every penny.

      The album artwork is very clever. The front is a portrait of Eminem's face made out of pills on a black background. Okay, that sounds really weird, but i'm sure most people will of seen the album so will know what I mean! I thought it mirrored both Eminem's personal struggle with his sleeping pill addiction, and the album tracks on the cover really well, and overall I think it's genius.

      On the left hand corner of the CD cover is a white box with details such as Eminem's name and city, and with the CD's retail date 05-19-09 which is the 19th of May 2009. It ia designed to look like an ID card or the kind of sticker that you would get wrapped around a bottle of medication, which is also clever and it has the album title at the top of the sticker in bold writing with the second E the wrong way around, something that Eminem has done with all of his album covers.

      On the right hand corner it has the Parental Advisory sign to make it clear that this is an album for more mature teens (i'd say 16ish) and adults only. I am 19 and actually got ID'd by HMV while buying this (I look young!), however I can see why they don't want younger people who are 13/14 listening to this because of the very graphic and at times disturbing content (stories of Eminem's sick fantasys and details of murder/drugs/rape etc), but obviously as this is available on pirate copy sites for free, the Parental Advisory aspect of the album won't stop kids from downloading it.

      The actual CD is white with red writing which says Push Down & Turn. The back of the album is designed to look like a prescription form, with a pill bottle label stuck over it which contains the words "Aftermath Drugs Marshall Mathers 8 Mile Road, Detroit, MI. Take 1 tablet(s) one time(s) daily at 3am." Underneath this it has the track list.

      The track list is as follows, I won't just write a meaningless list of the songs but I will try my best to describe them..

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      Track 1: Dr West
      Play Time: 1 Minute and 29 Seconds
      My Rating: 2/5: Boring at first but the ending is great and really got me into the whole feel of the album
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      This is a dialouge track of Eminem discussing his release from the rehab clinic with his doctor. At first everything seems normal, with Eminem asking his doctor lots of questions about keeping his sobriety. His doctor seems very unsupportive and gives strange awnsers, and Eminem asks him what to do when he finds himself in a situation where a friend is drinking alchohol and what to do if he gets tempted to have a drink too. His doctors reply is "Take a drink, you know, take the edge off." Eminem starts questioning him, seemingly confused, when Dr West's voice becomes destorted and he rattles a bottle of Sleeping Pills (Eminem's past addiction), at Eminem. Dr West says "What's the matter darling? Having some doubts are we?", and then it starts to be clear the Dr West is actually the drugs talking, telling him they'll always be together/Eminem can't leave them. Eminem becomes angry, and then the song of an alarm sounds. It had all been a nightmare, brought on by the stress of Eminem trying to stay off the drugs. I thought it was quite interesting, although at first I was dissapointed as I had expected a song, however it was worth listening to and gave me a feel of what the album was about.

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      Track 2: 3AM
      Play Time: 5 Minutes and 19 Seconds
      My Rating: 3/5: Interesting lyrics, good, catchy beat
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      From the moment the track begins playing it is clear that Eminem is back to his old tricks and that this will be a disturbing song just by Eminem's erratic tone of voice. I think this song will be most enjoyed by Eminem's hardcore fans who love his disturbing sense of humour, but if you are listening to this song and it's your first time you've heard an Eminem song i'm not sure you will enjoy it so much! There is a good beat and the lyrics are really interesting but slightly disturbing. Eminem creates a persona of been a serial killer which is vocallised in third person. In the opening verse he is stalking his victim, at first the murderer is known as "he", but by the fourth verse the murderer is "I". Despite the graphic lyrics - including the detail of dismembering a family member and bathing in his blood - it tells a good story with clear vocals and a catchy beat. The overall feel I got was that the murderer was Eminem (obviously not really, but in the song), and he was commiting the murders after taking medication, and waking up and knowing he had done something but not excactly what or to who he had done it to. He makes a few references to the film Silence of the lambs, so I am guessing he is either copying the techniques of hannibal lecter, or is dipping into the mind of the killer and speaking the insane thoughts of Hannibal Lecter. The chorus is ridiculously catchy. Because of the words used in this song, it's important not the get carried away and start singing along if there are people around, and I always make sure if I am in public that no one is able to hear through my earphones due to the swearing etc.

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      Track 3: My Mom
      Play Time: 5 Minutes and 19 Seconds
      My Rating: 3/5: Has a humerous side to it, interesting to listen to
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      In Eminem's own words, this is a story of how he became "hooked on valium". He sings in a silly tone of voice, not his usual rapping voice, about how his mum would put valium into his meals and drinks, and even killed the dog after giving it a pill, and the overall story is about how his mum is to blame for his drug addiction because she herself was a drug addict, apparently. I doubt that most of the events that happen in the song are true because he says "Sorry, Mom!" at the end, and because of the silly tone of the entire song, it makes me think he is perhaps poking fun of himself as he is renound at writing nasty things about his mum. The lyrics are quite funny at times, though are graphic and describing child abuse. The backing track is also silly and not the typical heavy type of beat that Eminem usually uses in songs. My favourite line in the song is Eminem talking as if he was a child again and saying to his mum "Wait a minute, this ain't dinner this is paint thinner." I think this line confirms the song is mostly in jest rather than a nasty dig at his mum, however due to his poor upbringing I think there may be a little truth to this, perhaps not the forcing him to take drugs part but rather the fact that he may of been tempted to take drugs as his mum took them, or there been nothing to eat in the house as there was only drugs.

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      Track 4: Insane
      Play Time: 3 Minutes and 1 Second
      My Rating: 2/5: A bit too graphic for me, catchy beat though and some silly lyrics
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      This is likely the most controversial song on this album. The song from the beginning is about child rape, with Eminem rapping about how his step dad raped him (with ALOT of graphic detail), and how his mum didn't care and favoured the step father over the child.. after a bit of research I can conclude that Eminem was never molested by his step dad, so it is obviously just another shock factor type song, which will by no doubt offend endless amounts of people. The song is definetly aimed at the hardcore Eminem fans who love his sick lyrics, I am an Eminem fan but found the lyrics a little shocking however it didn't put me off listening to the song again. The rest of the song is his split personality caused by the abuse that his persona suffered. Not the best song, but very catchy and full of gory detail that gives it edge and it's probably a song many people will be talking about even months after hearing it.

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      Track 5: Bagpipes From Baghdad
      Play Time: 4 Minutes and 43 Seconds
      My Rating: 4/5: Humerous, great lyrics/tone and a catchy chorus/beat
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      At the beginning of the song there is lots of insults aimed towards his ex Mariah Carey, and hints are made that she is an alchoholic, although the tone is very 'non serious' as Eminem is talking about how she apparently locked him in her cellar and only fed him wine and bread. Her boyfriend Nick Canon also gets a few insults from Eminem. The song in my opinion was very much written to provoke Mariah and Nick, and it also gained alot of controversy, including Nick Cannon claiming that Eminem's insults were "racist bigotry." I personally can not see at all how this song is racist and the insults are not graphic or insulting, just silly. There is also a verse of Eminem describing having sex with conjoined twins which is quite graphic, but again it is funny.

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      Track 6: Hello
      Play Time: 4 Minutes and 8 Seconds
      My Rating: 2/5: Catchy
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      This at first reminds me of Eminem's older (and best) work, but then it just gets a little silly and samey. It focuses on drug addiction and women throwing themself at him. The opening verse is Eminem saying "Hello, hello I never meant to leave you", which is aimed at his fans (in my opinion). I can't really say much about this as it definetly contains a mix of subject matters and it's not the best song to stick with - I usually skip it as it's so samey.

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      Track 7: Tonya
      Play Time: 42 Seconds
      My Rating: 2/5: A good introduction
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      This is a dialouge skit, I was not really sure what was going on at first but it sounded like the woman (presumably called Tonya) is getting raped because of the sounds made and her saying "Wait, wait, wait, stop, stop, stop", but then she starts saying that her car broke down and thanking who ever she is talking to so presumably the stranger had fixed her car. Just as she is thanking the stranger, there is the noise of tape and she starts to freak out, and the sound of the tape been wrapped around her mouth can be heard as her voice starts fading. There is also rain in the background with is creepy. In my opinion the skit acts as an introduction to the following track on the album, which is about abduction and murder.

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      Track 8: Same Song And Dance
      Play Time: 4 Minutes and 6 Seconds
      My Rating: 5/5: Great beat, good lyrics, subminimal message
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      This is probably my favourite track on the Relapse album. His rapping is top notch in this, the rhymes are incredible, the chorus is really catchy and I really can not fault it. Definetly a song to have on full blast. In this song, Eminem is in the persona of a rapist/serial killer/general odd bod. Doesn't sound great I know, but the lyrics are immense, he tells several stories of abductions, mainly foccusing on the stupidness of the victims as all of them get into the car without a fuss. The rapist/odd bod is also somewhat of a celebrity enthusiast. His first victim is Lindsay Lohan, with him discribing how backstage after a concert he persuaded her to get into his car so he could drive her to rehab as she "looked a little thin." His second victim "was even bigger than the first - pop star, icon, the works". It's Britney Spears, and he contemplates different ways he can show his affection for her, including the thought of perhaps cutting his ear off and sending it to her. He then fantasizes about creeping up to her mansion, climbing over her security gate wearing stilletoes with drugs in tow and getting into her house, orally raping her and then murdering her. The murder description sounds a lot like a reference to Ted Bundy - "I'll make a new outfit out of you." Ofcourse nothing in the song is even slightly true, and although disturbing it does have a lot of depth to it, I personally think the meaning behind the song is not just 'another silly eminem song', but that in the song he is sending a message out to women about all the sick, crazy men that they will attract if they don't respect themself - the line "Yeah baby do that dance, it's the last dance you'll ever get the chance to do, girl shake that ass" makes me imagine a girl dancing provocatively in a club then been offered a lift by the killer, it's quite creepy! This is my opinion and as a young women this is the message I got. I did not think this straight away, I thought it was just about a serial killer who was describing how every murder was 'the same song and dance', but after listening to this song I get the idea that it is much more than that.

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      Track 9: We Made You
      Play Time: 4 Minutes and 29 Seconds
      My Rating: 3/5: Catchy, good lyrics
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      This focuses mainly on making jibes towards well known celebrities - Kim Kardashian, Jessica Simpson, Ellen Degeneres, Sarah Palin, Lindsay Lohan etc. The video is hilarious and makes the song ten times better. It's a nice, fun song to stick on at a party and dance erraticly! It's an easy to listen to song - not much depth. This at first, in my opinion, was an insult to his older stuff, and the first time I heard it I hated it, as it is so against his older, grittier stuff, but it has grown on me. Overall a fun and catchy song that isn't too graphic or heavily offensive.

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      Track 10: Medicine Ball
      Play Time: 3 Minutes and 57 Seconds
      My Rating: 3/5: Great beat and lyrics
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      This song is much more like the older stuff, lots of silliness but in a more of a serious tone of voice so it makes it grittier. The chrorus lyrics isn't brilliant but the beat makes up or that. It's a very crazy kind of song with lots of insults etc (the one about Christopher Reeves was a little harsh). It's not my favourite song but whenever it is on the radio it gets me singing along.

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      Track 11: Paul
      Play Time: 19 Seconds
      My Rating: 1/5: It's okay
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      This is a voice mail from Eminem's manager, Paul Wall, who is ringing Eminem to tell him that the album contains too much offensive material (the incest rape and the Christopher Reeves references etc) and that he has had enough with the album and is opting out of any involvement. I suppose it is highlighting how controversial the album is. I am unsure/doubt if this is real. It is okay but I would of preferred track 11 to of been a song rather than a skit.

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      Track 12: Stay Wide Awake
      Play Time: 5 Minutes and 20 Seconds
      My Rating: 5/5: Great
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      I love this song! It's got a great feel to it - really good beats and lyrics, the song is about various murderers, whos thoughts are mirrored through Eminem. The first victim is a pregnant girl who he presumably rapes and murders, Eminem is talking about his darker side ("I'm the kinda guy that's mild but I might flip an get a little bit wilder"), he describes how his friends don't know the other side of him and that his 'wild' side scares him - "there's a monster inside of me, it's quite ugly and it frightens me". The line "Better try to stay wide awake, or you might be found dead by the lake" is ofcourse about the infamous Freddy Kruger. The lyrics are creepy, thought provoking, but ingenius, the beat makes the song that bit better and both the lyrics and vocals are faultless.

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      Track 13: Old Time's Sake
      Play Time: 4 Minutes and 38 Seconds
      My Rating: 4/5: Good, reminds me of his older albums
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      Eminem collaborates with Dre in this song, for old times sake. Dre's lyrics are good but Eminem's are better,it has a real old school feel to it and brings back memories of the older albums. Really catchy beat, faultless lyrics and very 'Slim Shady'.

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      Track 14: Must Be The Ganja
      Play Time: 4 Minutes and 2 Seconds
      My Rating: 4/5: Good, very catchy, funny lyrics
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      Another 'Slim Shady' song, brill lyrics. There is not much of a story to it but it's got a good beat so it's good to dance or run to.

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      Track 15: Mr Mathers
      Play Time: 42 Seconds
      My Rating: 0/5: Boring
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      I was a little lost by this at if i'm honest but after listening to Deja Vu I understood that he had overdosed.

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      Track 15: Deja Vu
      Play Time: 4 Minutes and 34 Seconds
      My Rating: 4/5: Interesting song, good lyrics
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      This has a good introduction of paramedics talking about him as he has overdosed. Eminem is talking about his manic state when on drugs, and how his daughter etc noticed and were scared of him. He wants to get away from this but can't, for anyone addicted to anything I imagine this will be very relateable. He makes excuses to take drugs and describes his frustrations with the addiction and how lonely it makes him feel. The end of the song describes his overdose. A really good song that was very touching.

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      Track 17: Beautiful
      Play Time: 6 Minutes and 22 Seconds
      My Rating: 5/5: Really good, relateable, brilliant chorus
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      Eminem is talking about how he needs to get out of his drug habit, it's really touching. When it first came out everyone was always playing it on there iPods/phones, and have since lost interest but I listen to this regulary as the chrous ("Don't say you ain't beautiful") always makes me feel loads better and alot of Eminem's issues - anxiety etc I can relate to. Eminem also talks about how everyone crowds around him/pampers him and he'd rather they leave him alone. Eminem sings in this song, he has a suprisingly nice singing voice and it doesn't spoil the song at all, it makes it much better. I really love this song and would reccomend it.

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      Track 18: Crack a Bottle
      Play Time: 4 Minutes and 57 Seconds
      My Rating: 3/5: Upbeat
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      This song is quite good, but I can't help think it's almost the same as We Made You - it has the same tone in my opinion but the lyrics are good. Dr Dre and 50 Cent are also in this song, which makes it a bit of a change from just Eminem, but I really don't like 50 Cent's verse. Overall this song is not bad but not great, I will admit I usually skip it as I prefer the songs with a bit more depth - this song has little point to it.

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      Track 20: Underground
      Play Time: 6 Minute and 11 Seconds
      My Rating: 3/5: Grittier, Eminem puts alot of emotion into it
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      Basically the song is about his return to music. Lots of silly bits to it however has a much grittier feel to it like his older stuff. The chorus is okay and the beat is catchy. At the end of the song there is dialouge which has someone (possibly a drugged up/drunk Eminem) tap dancing and singing a graphic version of We Made You in an AA drug meeting which is really funny!


      Overall this album is really good, but in my opinion, it's nothing compared to Encore or The Eminem Show. I would reccomend listening to it if you haven't already. It's the type of album you either love or hate, and although, as I said before, it's nothing compared to his older work, I personally love it.

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      • More +
        01.05.2010 14:54
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        Relapse is Eminem's best album!

        Eminem - Relapse (2009)

        Producer: Dr Dre, Eminem, Mark Batson, other

        Dr. West (Skit)
        3 A.M.
        My Mom
        Insane
        Bagpipes from Baghdad
        Hello
        Tonya (Skit)
        Same Song & Dance
        We Made You
        Medicine Ball
        Paul (Skit)
        Stay Wide Awake
        Old Time's Sake
        Must Be the Ganja
        Mr. Mathers (Skit)
        Déjà Vu
        Beautiful
        Crack a Bottle
        Steve Berman (Skit)
        Underground

        Released in 2009, Relapse is Eminem's sixth studio album. From its title onwards, Relapse is as honest, frank and a definite statement as you are likely to get in the world of popular music today. Eminem's contending with inner demons has always been very public, since they form the basis of 99% of his music. Yet, as he started to succumb to various drug addictions after the release of his previous album, Encore, it was apparent to everyone and their dog that Eminem was in trouble.

        How many artists have gone completely off the rails and have later returned with nothing to offer? The history of music is littered with artists and musicians who were never able to wave their addictions goodbye and have paid for it dearly, sometimes even with their lives. Particularly the last decade has seen so many big names fall from grace and never make a successful reappearance. Granted, some have returned to the spotlight, but more often than not it's for all the wrong reasons (Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan, I'm looking at you).

        What's even more surprising is how Eminem has managed to rise as a phoenix from the ashes and not only return with a great comeback record, but reappear with the best material of his entire career. I deliberately held off reviewing Relapse until now so any doubting Thomas couldn't claim that I'm merely boarding the train of media hysteria. Almost a year after its release, I can confirm that my first impressions haven't changed one iota.

        You see, consistency is the key to Relapse's success. It's constancy vital to victory. Eminem's rhymes have always been perverse and vitriolic, that's a given, however, they've never been quite this formidable. At times I felt that Relapse should come with one of those warnings you get with dangerous chemicals: 'Keep canister upright for fear of substance combustion'. And have you checked the speed at which Eminem is now rapping? He's never had a flow as constant and unforgiving as this. This is one of the few rap albums where its distinguished lyrics will still be revealing hidden subtleties months after purchase. Therefore, in terms of longevity and value for money, few albums are on the same playing field as Relapse.

        The opening 3 A.M. is a fine starter before the main course and provides an insight into the inherent rhyming abilities flaunted throughout Eminem's comeback: "Swallowing the Calotapin while I'm nodding in and out on the ottoman/At the Ramada Inn holding onto the pill bottle then, lick my finger and swirl it round the bottle, then..." That's in about six or seven seconds, people. Eminem's rapid, yet, stop-start syllabic rap is awe-inspiring to listen to at times like this, while Dre's ominous, stripped back rhythms create a minacious setting for the listener to get lost in.

        Eminem's sharp and dramatic wordplay on Bagpipes from Baghdad develops into a beautifully churlish song on the album, as Dre musically takes the lead with an aggressive bagpipe sample, of all things. Eminem's grisly lyrics will have you simultaneously cringing and in hysterics throughout Bagpipes from Baghdad. Stay Wide Awake similarly exploits Eminem's lyrical feats. A fan of dealing with the macabre and hair-raising, while also sickening his audience, he handles this here with gruesome levels of competency. Again, Dre's beats are, in my opinion, the best they've ever been. It's a whole world away from the commercial likes which have dragged down some of his later works. They're persistent, forthright and above all chilling.

        In many ways, Relapse takes a step back from Encore's overproduced nonsense and Dr Dre returns to the skeletal beats of Eminem's commercial debut, The Slim Shady LP. At first, musically, some of the songs emerge with hardly a backbone to prop them up - Hello and Must Be the Ganja stood out for me - but as soon as Eminem starts dropping the verses you realise that they've been designed this way for a reason. This method accentuates Eminem's incredible cyclicity and before long the beats have become one with Eminem's words.

        A song which almost passed me by on first listen is Déjà Vu. Upon repeated hearings of Déjà Vu it became apparent that it was an extremely honest recording, if not devastatingly blunt in the appropriate places. As Eminem relays the nature of his addictions and the trials he experienced while being weaned off the drugs, you can only begin to try and relate to the perseverance he must have had to see him through this ordeal. The song inhabits a dark and dingy place but it's worth a visit. "Maybe just a nice cold brew, 'what's a beer?' That's the devil in my ear, I've been sober a f*ckin' year and that f*cker still talks to me, he's all I can f*ckin hear!" Expel your demons, Marshall, oust them.

        I wince at most rap albums which have twenty tracks; their largest issue undoubtedly quality control. In the past, Eminem has been as guilty for committing this musical crime as most artists. The strangest thing happened, though, while listening to Relapse - I just didn't want it to end. After the disc had finished spinning I was genuinely gutted. That's not to say Relapse doesn't have a few tracks I'd dismiss - particularly the poor singles Crack a Bottle and We Made You, then perhaps the ill-advised Insane - but overall it is a very rounded package. I'm still not sold on the idea of the 'skits' which appear throughout Relapse but here they seem more relevant than in the past.

        Relapse is without a doubt one of the very best rap records I have ever heard. It doesn't try to do anything which Eminem hasn't already been doing for the past decade - it just does the same things better and with more sang-froid poise than we've been used to seeing. Personally, the sheer quality of Relapse has made me even more intolerant towards the volumes of drivel which clog up the airwaves today. As the release date of his next album, Recovery, comes ever closer, 2010 will inevitably see Eminem go from strength to strength. Yes, the real Slim Shady is back and he's here to stay.

        9/10

        Daniel Kemp

        Read more reviews at www.danielkempreviews.co.uk

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          05.04.2010 00:41
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          Better than Encore

          Eminem returns finally, after the extremely disappointing, sometimes bordering on dire, Encore. This is his fifth studio album and after the debacle of the previous one, my hopes were high that this was simply a blip in his catalogue.

          Of course no Eminem album would be complete without the more pop oriented, tongue in cheek single which he always comes out with, thankfully while this spawned, We Made You it is something you can listen to with a bouncy beat and a very pleasing flow. The lyrics aren't designed to amaze, just make you chuckle and they succeed. The accent though is something I am unaccustomed to though and takes a little getting used to.

          The standout tracks from this album include the dark themes of Stay Wide Awake which is very much a horror rap song in which Eminem takes the guise of a serial killer. The delivery of the flow is excellent, really excelling in timing his rapping to the beat and capturing your attention. The lyrics are deeply disturbing and are certainly not from the faint hearted. Equally though they are extremely flow and you can really picture the painting he is creating.

          We see a much much more introspective and reflective Eminem on the excellent Deja Vu. He skilfully delves into how he became addicted to drugs and how it led to the spiraling turn of events which led him into being forced to go into rehab.

          The final song Underground recaptures the horror theme and over a thunderous dramatic beat where Eminem goes full flow into crazy, insane, bizarre lyrics. However what he also does is exhibit his ability to construct rhyme after rhyme but his ability to shape songs out of it.

          As for the other songs on the album, they are very much a mixed bag. The production through the album is absolutely excellent but sometimes it is marred with just nonsensical nonsense which is offensive not simply because of it's offense lyrics but because it's without a direction.

          The songs that fall into this category are Medicine Ball, Bagpipes from Baghdad and Insane. Other notable songs are 3am, Beautiful and Same Song and Dance. The other songs on here fall somewhere between good and horrible, they are average efforts.

          So what we have here is the good and bad, the production is excellent, the delivery is superb, some of the rhymes are superbly constructed but and this is a big but, this accent mars many songs and while the rhymes are actually quite good on some of these songs, the accent overshadows the positive elements.

          The special edition album included a song called My Darling which must rank as one of the best Eminem songs ever. I recommend you hear this and contrast it to what is produced on here. In addition Be Careful What You Wish for, which also appeared in this edition outshone some of the songs on this standard version

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          21.03.2010 14:01
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          Eminem came back

          Relapse is the sixth studio album from Eminem, and came out in May 2009, although was leaked on the internet some time before this which is when I first head the songs, however I still decided to buy the album as I liked it that much.

          The album had some mixed reviews, it was his first albums in 4 years, and Eminem being the huge star that he is, this was always bound to be an album that was analysed carefully, however despite mixed reviews at first the album went on to sell well and become popular amongst his fans.

          The album features song really great songs, lyrically and musically, its produced by Dr Dre, and in fact all tracks on the album are apart from beautiful which Eminem produced himself, and this is actually one of my favourites from the album.

          From the comical lyrics of we made you, crack a bottle and even my Mom to some extents, to the dark lyrics of insane, and 3 am, and the very personal real lyrics of Beautiful and déjà vu, this album really does have it all, songs for every single mood. Personally I think lyrically this album have some of his greatest ever work, and I love every single track on here. I think it has some really great singles as well but the main reason behind these not being a commercial success is that it isn't his first album and people know how good he is by now. Most people I know really like this album, and I think the long time Eminem fans love it, so if you haven't checked this one out yet then please do, its great.


          1. Dr. West [Skit]
          2. 3 a.M.
          3. My Mom
          4. Insane
          5. Bagpipes From Baghdad
          6. Hello
          7. Tonya [Skit]
          8. Same Song & Dance
          9. We Made You
          10. Medicine Ball
          11. Paul [Skit]
          12. Stay Wide Awake
          13. Old Time's Sake
          14. Must Be the Ganja
          15. Mr. Mathers [Skit]
          16. Deja Vu
          17. Beautiful
          18. Crack a Bottle - (featuring 50 Cent)
          19. Steve Berman [Skit]
          20. Underground

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            25.02.2010 00:26
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            Best hip-hop album of 2009? Oh yes.

            This was a superb return to form for Eminem, bringing his humour and fluid rhyming style effortlessly back to the big stage. Regardless of the troubles he's had in his personal life, there's no doubting he has a magnificent rhyming technique that shames the recent rise in party hip-hop artists, like Flo Rida.

            Dr West featured a nice cameo from Dominic West, who's best known for being Detective Jimmy McNulty in HBOs The Wire, and gains some respect here. Highlights of the album I believe are 3AM, Insane, We Made You, Old Time's Sake, Deja Vu, which is a superb song, Crack a Bottle and Underground. I fear the other songs don't have as much a pull though, I find too many of them jokey and trying to not be taken seriously. We know how good he is, I'd just like him to have more serious songs with that hard edge he has inside him, pure venom spitting out of his lungs.

            All signs are pointing towards another great follow-up in Relapse 2, and I cannot wait.

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              05.01.2010 01:30
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              --

              I approach this review of one of the most highly anticipated albums of 2009 with some trepidation; in dealing with a phenomenon such as Eminem one has to make sure to do this album a certain justice.


              Background
              - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
              This much awaited album, the sixth released by Eminem, followed a five year hiatus by the infamous white rapper; a hiatus apparently fuelled by drink, drugs and suicidal tendencies if the content of the album is anything to go by. Relapse is both very obviously and rather surprisingly a very personal album. I say it is obvious because of its name, but upon listening to the songs it is hard to grasp from the lyrical content that this is about Eminem himself; most of the songs are very much focused on psychotic alter ego Slim Shady and a murder spree. Eminem has expressed a fascination with serial killers and the fact that they look just like you and me. This strikes me as a very personal reflection on his behalf that shows that despite appearances, people who appear to be happy and have it all can be suffering, in Eminem's case this manifested itself in a drug addiction and suicidal thoughts.

              Songs
              - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

              Track List
              -------------
              1. "Dr. West" (skit)
              2. "3 a.m."
              3. "My Mom"
              4. "Insane"
              5. "Bagpipes from Baghdad"
              6. "Hello"
              7. "Tonya" (skit)
              8. "Same Song & Dance"
              9. "We Made You"
              10. "Medicine Ball"
              11. "Paul" (skit)
              12. "Stay Wide Awake"
              13. "Old Time's Sake" (featuring Dr. Dre)
              14. "Must Be the Ganja"
              15. "Mr. Mathers" (skit)
              16. "Déjà Vu"
              17. "Beautiful"
              18. "Crack a Bottle" (featuring Dr. Dre and 50 Cent)
              19. "Steve Berman" (skit)
              20. "Underground"

              There are a number of 'skits' on this album which see Eminem interacting with people ranging from his doctor to his record producer. Although they are spread out over the album I'll deal with them all here. Basically they track Eminem's relapse back into the Slim Shady persona and frequently serve as precursors to the following tracks. They are suitably shocking and break feel like the narrative on an album which is more like a story than a musical compilation.

              The songs on this album are arguably the best ones Eminem has ever released from a technical perspective. Simple two or three note melodies provide a backdrop for Eminem to work his lyrical mastery, which is where the real music is made. Eminem's talent more than shines through in complex wordplay, awe-inspiring rhyme schemes and sheer lyrical virtuosity, putting modern pretenders to shame. The songs are less upbeat than on previous outings from the artist, but we still see the occasional clown-track like 'we made you' or upbeat tune like 'crack a bottle'. On the whole, this is a dark album showcasing one of the great talents of the last decade.

              But, the album has received lots of criticism for its shock content and the dark themes. I can't deny that the album is shocking and dark, this is apparent from the opening song 3am, but what these reviewers have missed is that past songs have been much more shocking. Anybody who disagrees simply has to listen to Kim from his 3rd album - this song truly shocked me when I heard it. If criticism is due anywhere, I believe it ought to be for the fact that he still hasn't moved away from this shock attitude. However, what else has he got to rap about? Rap is obviously a truly personal experience and Eminem is dealing with personal demons that almost saw him end his life; we can't just expect him to stop rapping about that and to start rapping about booty and bling.

              In conclusion, I highly recommend this album, personally my favourite of all of Eminem's releases. There are common criticisms such as the shock content, but I think this is something you have to judge yourself.

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              02.11.2009 15:45
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              Some great tracks from Eminem

              Relapse is Eminem's first album release for 4 years - mainly due to his drug problems, which is a constant theme throughout the album. I downloaded Relapse from iTunes, and so this is a review of the actual music rather than the physical album.

              The version I have downloaded includes 22 tracks although 2 of these are the single versions of We Made You (the album's second single) and Crack a Bottle (which features Dr Dre and 50 Cent). The album lasts around an hour and a quarter and is produced by Dr Dre.

              Anyone who's ever listened to Eminem will know what to expect - offensive lyrics, lots of swearing and inappropriate subject matter (like being raped by your stepfather and murdering your cousin). But most of all Eminem's excellent vocabulary and rhyming style, which again shine through on this very impressive album.

              Relapse perhaps doesn't contain as many stand-out hit records as the excellent Marshall Mathers LP, but this is a high that Eminem will probably never attain again. That's not to say that this isn't a great album though, many of the songs are very catchy (We Made You, My Mom) and some (such as the excellent Beautiful) show Eminem's softer side.

              For me the best song on the album is Same Song And Dance which includes verses about Lindsay Lohan and Britney Spears. Eminem also disses the likes of Heath Ledger, his mum (again) and Christopher Reed (which I've never really understood).

              In keeping with Eminem's style, the album contains very few guest stars - only Dr Dre and 50 Cent feature on Crack a Bottle, although Relapse does contain several interludes/skits to break-up the constant flow of Eminem's verses.

              Relapse isn't Eminem's best ever album, but it's certainly up there with the best material to be released in the last few years. There are some poorer tracks (I don't personally like Medicine Ball), but these are far outweighed by the album's better songs (Bagpipes From Baghdad, Same Song And Dance, We Made You, De Ja Vu and Beautiful).

              If you like Eminem, you'll like Replase. However, if you don't like Eminem, there's nothing here to change your mind.

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              19.10.2009 18:47
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              Great album, diffrent songs for diffrent people.

              Eminem is back with his 6th album, (or 7th for the fans who had his very 1st underground one.) Its called relapse and aptly titled after his recent release from rehab. It was released by record label interscope records alongsige Marshels own companies Aftermath Entertainment and Shady Records.
              The album release date was put back several times due to the leaking of songs and eventually got released in May 2009.
              It is his first album since Encore which even Eminem admitted was not his best work. Encore was released 5years ago so this album was much awaited.

              Eminem decided to take a break after encore to focus on producing hip hop music but after the death of his D12 band member Proof, he went back into drugs and 'relapsed' fueling the motivation for the album.
              'crack a bottle' was the first song released from the album, which was produced by Dr Dre, along with the majority of the other songs on the album. You can definatly get the typical Dre and Eminem vibe throughout the songs so for those who like that you will definatley enjoy this album.
              Crack a bottle also featured 50 cent.

              The next song released was 'We made you' which is a typical satire filled eminem song, with catchy chorus, fun video and laughable lyric content.
              Mocking stars such as Kin Kardasian ( american model) jessica simpson and amy whinehouse.

              The single releases differed in the Uk than the US. ive seen videos on youtube for 3AM and old times sake (which also features Dre) but dont think they were officially released in the UK.

              The album reached number 1 in the US and it was the fastest selling album so far in 2009 in both UK and US.

              The content of the album is eminems usual crazy stuff. The lyrics are controversial, but thats a reason why people love him.
              His alter ego, slim shady, is also back which he decided to leave behind in previous album.

              The album playlist:
              Dr west (intro)
              3AM
              My Mom
              Insane
              Bagpipes from bagdad
              Hello
              Tanya (skit)
              Same song and Dance
              We Made You
              Medicin Ball
              Paul (skit)
              Stay wide awake
              old time sake
              must be the ganja
              mr mathers (skit)
              deja vu
              Beautiful
              Crack a Bottle
              Steve Berman (skit)
              Underground/Ken Kaniff (outro)

              each song has a diffrent vibe, Insane is controversial and talks about himself being a victim of child rape...by his dad. But you have to rememebr its all in jest. I understand that some of these subject people dont think should be made to be seen in this light but it isnt real.
              in 3AM eminem is a psych who kills people
              My Mom is another song about his mum, but this ones a bit diffrent, funny and catchy.

              The artwork is eminems face depicted with a mosaic of pills and the sticker on the side looks like a medication sticker. Its almost like eminem is mocking himself and putting the drugs in his past by making the themes behind the album so obvious.

              I would recmend buying this album, but i am a bit biased as ive always liked eminem and its likely i would of found positives if it wasnt that good, but i do think its better than the last two, its got the eminem vibe but with new and exciting songs.
              eminem is definatley a lyrical genious and anyone who doesn't like him won't understand the the complexity of the rhyming and beats within his songs.

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              23.09.2009 11:44
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              great comback of a genius

              And he is back thank the lord. When eminem came out originally I thought he was a brilliant artist who talked about his wayward life through his rap songs. His life has never been perfect or easy and to listen to the words he does explain it to you from break ups to drug taking he doesnt hide the fact of being bad which is good.

              After hearing that he was retiring from singing I was a bit dissapointed but reasured myself that he would come back he had taken breaks before he would miss music too much.

              Relapse has got to be one of the best albums that has come from Dr Dre and eminem New songs that relate to his life of drug taking (prescription) and no sleep, about his comeback to his music career and depression.

              The new songs are very catchy. Some are very similar to previos songs that he has created while others seem very original and uptodate with the beats behind the words he has moved along with the times so that his music didnt flop. This has been a geat comeback piece of genius.

              My favrouit songs in this cd are Insane and crack a bottle I love all the songs on this album but those two stand out for me because the hold a differece to previous music from him.

              There are 20 songs in all on this album with songs supported by Dr Dre and 50cent. I like the cover of this album, the picture of his face is made from assortments of pills which fits in well with the title relapse. The music list on the back is on a prescription background that states how many pills to take and at what times that is in his name. This cover is very original and explains the album well before listening to it.

              The swearing in the album is the same as normal from him. It is strong language and spoken very often so if you have children keep it out of reach. I have found that I can even dance to this cd of his and when the children are out I can turn it up and sing along.

              I love this album and would say any eminem fan should definately get it. Unfortunately if you have strong views about drug taking and swearing I would stay clear.

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              06.08.2009 15:02
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              Simply talent.

              "Relapse" is the sixth studio album by the one and only Eminem. Fresh from Interscopr records, this clearly has traces of Dr Dre from his previous work, but is a super buy from as little as £6 on all CD websites and avalible from all record shops.

              I simply enjoy this one to the bone:- it has nothing gob-smackingly legend, but there is somthing very comforting with seeing a familiar face and the much-missed, gasping "Slim-Shady" inputs on the world, war, people and politics.
              The release may shock some after the American rapper claimed retirement to finally see his children grow up...but he seems to have literally "relapsed" back into his successful hobby to channel his thoughts and opinions- what a surprise.

              Full of diversity, these 20 tracks are catchy, witty and a voice to those who have none. Utterly brilliant- some funny, some thoughtful, it has something for everyone.

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              28.07.2009 14:51
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              Once and Eminem fan always an Eminem fan

              O my god he freaking rocks.......

              Any true eminem fan knows the rest! hehe He is back and back with a true to nature big eminem bang!

              Relapse is the album I did not think I would ever hear after encore was a suposed good bye and thank god it wasn't, the world really does need the crazy insane genius sick filth that eminem gives to us.

              The ablum named Relapse is making a bit of a mock at himself as he has been in and out of rehab in his own life for the past couple of years and admititly suffered alcohol and prescription drugs addiction.

              In the twenty songs on his album he mocks this which is good at least he seems to be in a better place to poke fun at him self... there is also a funny song poking fun at the one and only Mariah Carey who my Marshall was to supposed to be dating some time back. Mariah has now realesed a song in retalition to Em's its called obbsessed or obbsession one of the two but she denies ever being with him and claims that he is just 'obsessed'

              Anyways, in true eminem style this is an offensive album not suitable for young ears with total genius rhymes and I just love it...
              he can be obsessed with me any day, i still love him as much today as I did when I was 14 but take it out of the car CD player now while my little boy is there, as much as I love Em I don't want a mini marshall on my hands.

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                27.07.2009 06:50

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                A fast paced assault on the ears

                Finally Eminem is back but in the form of Slim Shady, Rude, Grose, Intelligent, Hardcore, UnForgiving and just plain crazy but thats what makes the guy one of the greatest of all time. Relsape is an outstanding album, With all the swagger, youth and fresness of his first to ground braking albums Hits a bit hard tho. Personally i think Relapse is for people with an open mind and who have got a sense of humour. He says he was influenced by serial killers in the making of this album and can't you just tell. He goes back to his child hood as insperation for alot of the songs on this album and it makes you think, He must have had a terrible child hood if he can write all these songs about it. Theres a couple of great collabarations with the master Dr Dre, But Eminem out does him on each track proving that he's the king of this genre of music. Its a must.

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                26.07.2009 01:39
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                A varied, neurotic record that blends some tedious tunes along with flashes of absolute genius.

                Despite his own admission that people have been wondering 'where the f**k' he's been the last four years, it is hard to believe that it's been a full ten years since Eminem first graced us with the drug-fuelled, profanity-laden Slim Shady LP. Now though, four years after his last record, 2005's Encore, he's back with Relapse, a record that carries a huge weight of expectation.
                In the last four years, Marshall Mathers has endured drug addiction, rehab, more drug addiction and more rehab, on top of losing his best friend DeShaun 'Proof' Holton to a nightclub gun fight. Slim Shady has a whole world full of new issues, and he's going to share every last dark part of his mind with his fans around the world.

                'I was born with a d**k in my brain/yeah, fu**ked in the head/my stepfather said that I sucked in bed' from the aptly titled 'Insane' is a good example of what you can expect from Eminem on this record: whether he's sticking a flashlight up the derriere of Kim Kardashian in '3 am', or stalking Lindsay Lohan in 'Same old song and dance', in various places on this record Eminem sounds like he's completely lost the plot.

                One of the main problems with the record is that despite the controversial content, the record sounds far too safe. As an artist whose success has always been at least partially reliant on shock value, even the most savage attacks seem to have lost the edge they did. This means the songs lack the genuine sense of unease that tracks such as 'Kim' (from 2000's Marshall Mathers LP) presented to the listener.

                Even the songs like '3 am', a serial-killer rant which would on paper seem a prime target for controversy, seems forced. Sadly, it seems like controversy for the sake of it: not a nice accusation to level at someone with Mather's undoubted talents. Eminem himself seems to realise this, warily stating that: 'I guess it's time for you to hate me again/let's begin/now hand me the pen/how shall I begin it and where does it all end?' on 'Medicine Ball'

                What makes the weaker, more monotonous cuts on the record so frustrating is the fact that Relapse contains two or three moments that can easily be classed as among Eminem's best work. 'Deja Vu' sees Eminem lose the phony, semi Arabian accent that he first adopted for Encore's 'Ass Like That' (and that he unfortunately uses at various points throughout Relapse) and take on a more serious tone, and despite all the previous references to drugs and mental instability that have taken place throughout Relapse, it is the first time on the record that the listener can truly feel the pain Marshall Mathers has suffered in the last couple of years.

                'Beautiful' follows a similar pattern. Sampling Queen and Paul Rodgers, it is another lamenting ballad full of pleas to be able to revert to a normal life, and to trade places with someone so 'they could see, how it feels to be me'. Like 'Deja Vu', all hints of the desperate clown have gone, to be replaced by a stark, naked view of the world through Eminem's eyes.

                The best on this record, though, is undoubtedly saved until last. 'Underground' is simply huge. Dre's production sounds massive: sweeping strings, harmonious backing vocals and possibly the most thumping beat the Doc has ever composed. Shady pumps all the lyrical topics covered in the rest of the album: addiction, regret, depression and death. This time though, they don't sound cheap or fake: they ring with the same fury Eminem first spat out on the Slim Shady LP. He finally sounds like what he is after the four years he's lived through: a man with nothing to lose. Like 'Toy Soldiers' (the undoubted highlight from Encore), it is a final, brutal moment of genius from a monumentally talented man.

                The unfortunate question that will be on everybody's mind after hearing this record, though, is exactly how many more of those moments Eminem can have left.

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                22.07.2009 15:01
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                7/10

                This album has been spoken about loads before it was released, probably because Eminem Aka Marshall Mathers had announced his retirement a couple of years ago and now he's changed his mind and released another appropriately named album- Relapse.

                The album kicks off with Dr. West (Skit) where Eminem has a conversation with his Doctor, triggering him to change to Marshall Mathers and then to Slim Shady *(Relapse) and then it's on to the next song, 3 a.m. which has a very catchy chorus but the song describes some sort of horrendous massacre.

                The next song is My Mom, in this song Eminem dwcribes how his mother is to blame for Eminems drug problems.

                There are many more songs on the album I just gave you the above to give you a sample of what's on it. To be honest I felt a bit short changed when I listened to this album, it's not particularly a bad album, however I expected something a bit different. Its no where near as good as his previous albums but it's ok!

                No doubt Eminem is very talented and this album show cases it with some of the lyrics, hope you enjoy.

                My favorites:
                My mom
                Insane
                Crack a bottle
                We made you


                Track list-
                1. Dr West
                2. 3 a.m.
                3. My mom
                4. Insane
                5. Bagpipes from Baghdad
                6. Hello
                7. Tonya
                8. Same song and dance
                9. We made you
                10. Medicine Ball
                11. Paul
                12. Stay wide awake
                13. Old times sake ft Dr. Dre
                14. Must be the ganja
                15. Mr. Mathers
                16. Deja Vu
                17. Beautiful
                18. Crack a bottle
                19. Steve Berman
                20. Underground

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              • Product Details

                Disc #1 Tracklisting
                1 Dr. West
                2 3 a.m
                3 My Mom
                4 Insane
                5 Bagpipes From Baghdad
                6 Hello
                7 Tonya
                8 Same Song & Dance
                9 We Made You
                10 Medicine Ball
                11 Paul
                12 Stay Wide Awake
                13 Old Time's Sake
                14 Must Be The Ganja
                15 Mr. Mathers
                16 Deja Vu
                17 Beautiful
                18 Crack A Bottle
                19 Steve Berman
                20 Underground/Ken Kaniff