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The Relapse was an amazingly underrated comeback from veteran legend Eminem. This though seems like a bit of a cash in for christmas. It included all of the tracks off of the original Relapse all on one disk. What's different you ask? well aside from the new packageing and cover you will find another disk included which i assume is the refill. It contains very little tracks which are just leftovers from the original relapse recording. Apart from the new smash hit Forever where Eminem straight upstages some of the hottest rappers in the game at the moment. It is a good package dont get me wrong but if you already own the original theres no reason you should buy this, instead just download the bonus tracks. They are good, heartfelt elevator which explores Shady's fame and fun track Drop the Bomb on em featuring many references to HBO's The Wire. To sum up, its good, as long as you dont already have the original.
Relapse refill was released just before Christmas 2009 as a follow up to the album relapse that came out in May that year. It was released as Eminem wanted to put some more songs out there which he had intended to release on a whole relapse 2 album the same year, however he apparently changed his mind about the songs and the direction he wanted to take with relapse 2 so decided just just put out a small album to tie the fans over for a while.
2. Hell Breaks Loose
3. Buffalo Bill
5. Taking My Ball
6. Music Box
7. Drop the Bomb On 'Em
The album features 7 new songs though really only five of them were new songs as I had already heard the released previously forever collaboration song and the taking my ball which featured on the DJ hero game.
However despite there only being 5 new songs it was good to hear a few more from Eminem, all the songs on this one are fairly up beat ones, and my particular favourite is probably taking my ball followed by elevator. Forever is pretty good too though, especially if you like the other rappers on there, but it is mainly lil Wayne with a short rap from Eminem at the end.
If you're a big fan of Eminem then this is probably worth the buy, it now comes with the relapse CD in a kind of two disk set so you might as well get it like that, either way I still enjoyed this one despite people thinking it was just a bit of a money spinner.
Eminem has always been a force to be reckoned with in the world of hip hop; mess with him and you'll no doubt be the object of one of the lyrically genius 'diss' songs and we know all too well that no one wants that do they Mariah? It has to be said that when Eminem first hit the big time around 10 years ago his music was fresh, new, interesting and the world wanted more from Marshall Mathers. More is definitely what Eminem gave us, now after releasing 5 albums and 3 compilation albums Eminem has become the biggest selling rapper of all time and it's a crown he greatly deserves.
With the release of Relapse back in early 2009 it would seem that Eminem was back to his best, something which the critics didn't quite agree with since the album only reached a mediocre 3 out 5 stars on most websites. With only a couple of releases it was clear that Eminem was going to have to pull something new out of the bag in order to regain his King Of Hip Hop crown that seems to be continuously dragged from his head by the likes of Kanye West and Lil Wayne.
Eminem's new album is a re-release of Relapse and includes, not only the 20 songs that were on the original album but 7 new songs to tide fans over until the release of Relapse 2. Much like Lady Gaga has done recently, re-releasing an album with only a few new tracks I always find is the lazy option however with the news that he'll be releasing his brand new album next year I think we can let him off.
So is the re-release of Relapse titled 'Refill' actually any good and more importantly does it re-establish him as the King Of Hip Hop?
*** Tracks ***
2. Hell Breaks Loose
3. Buffalo Bill
5. Taking My Ball
6. Music Box
7. Drop The Bomb On 'Em
The album opens with the first single to be released, featuring new comer Drake, Kanye West and the infuriating Lil Wayne. The song doesn't have the essence of an Eminem song; simple beats and infectious lyrics. Infact this is really a Drake song that features Eminem so in that respect this is a lazy attempt at a new song, I was expecting this to be a remixed song with Eminem taking the reigns on the vocals but we hear more of Drake, Lil Wayne and Kanye than we do of our King. The song is an irritating piece of music, it's the sort of song that you'd expect Lil Wayne to release on his own with the echoing beats and overcrowded guest stars. This song is a real letdown. Eminem, despite overshadowing all other guest stars on the track doesn't get the chance to shine in this song which boils down to the fact that he only raps one verse. Lyric wise his verse is excellent and he shows that he can out-rap Lil Wayne and Kanye West at the drop of a hat. Unfortunately the song just doesn't resonate with me and in my mind it's not an original Eminem song.
Next song comes in the form of Hell Breaks Loose, as soon as this song began it reminded me of Hello which features in Relapse. This would be acceptable if both songs weren't on the same album. The song features long time collaborator and mentor Dr Dre. The song really gets going when the screeching continuous sounds make it's way into the background, leaving the lacklustre beat in the background. The chorus is relatively catchy but it's not a stand out Eminem song, just what you'd expect from Dre and Eminem but not one of their best. Buffalo Bill starts off with a woman screaming in the background, reminiscent of Kim from The Marshall Mathers LP. From then on we're given an interesting beat that only Eminem can pull off, his voice suits the beat and follows the pace perfectly. It's an insanely catchy tune with Eminem's classic simplistic chorus that becomes impossible to get out of your head.
Elevator is the first up-tempo song we're treated to on the album, the problem with this song is that it doesn't really have a point. It's based around having an elevator in your house, Eminem is famous for his highly personal content on his album, even the up-tempo songs had a personal resonance with him, this one almost boarders on a cheesy pop song. The lyrics are explicit which is what you'd expect but there's nothing that we haven't heard before in this song. Catchy on first listen but not one that I listen to on a regular basis. Taking My Ball is significantly better, this is what Eminem does best; he blends together lyrics that you would never imagine could be used in the same sentence let alone made to rhyme in a song. Eminem's vocals shine through the beat, which sounds strangely like Hell Breaks Loose at times with it's screeching backbeats. This is a song that his fans will love, Eminem does his obligatory bit of 'celebrity bashing', this time he hits out at the likes of Mischa Barton, Rosie 'O Donnel, Sarah Palin and Kim Kardashian. Half way through the song Eminem launches into his baby like voice, which worked well in the song Insane which features on Relapse however it doesn't have a place in this song and it seems like he's just trying his hand at different things to see what works. Unfortunately for this song it doesn't, although it still remains an excellently catchy song.
The undeniable highlight of the album is Music Box, the beat consists of the sound of a child's music box. This is what Eminem is superb and unrivalled at, he can put any sort of beat behind a song and make it into a catchy piece of rap and that's exactly what this is. The chimes that echo throughout the song are insanely captivating and this sounds nothing like he's ever released before. It's one of the more haunting songs on the album, with references to Jack The Ripper and peeping Toms throughout but given a chance it's Eminem at his best. Another instantly catchy song in which Eminem puts on a Jamaican accent over a heavy, booming beat is Drop A Bomb On 'Em. Another up-tempo and irritatingly catchy song but it's one that you'll tire of quickly. Lyric wise the song is brilliant, but that can be said of any Eminem song, leaving nothing new for fans to latch onto. It's a decent song but not a great song.
Overall this is a disappointing effort from Eminem and as a huge Eminem fan I am slightly disheartened by his lacklustre effort. It would appear that Eminem has become his own worst enemy; there's no one that rivals him in the music industry, therefore the only person he has to outdo is himself which is easier said than done. There's only so much new material that Eminem can release before his fans begin to tire of him and it's very clear that his earlier material outstrips this with ease.
With no mention of his ex-wife Kim or his Mother, Eminem has to find other things to rap about, however it would appear that Eminem is in his element when he has the weight of the world on his shoulders. This album shows that he has come through the majority of his struggles and good for him, unfortunately with the success in his personal life his career could possibly suffer.
Worth buying for die-hard Eminem fans but unfortunately it doesn't match his earlier releases. The album is available to download from iTunes and the CD can be bought from Amazon.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Dr. West
2 3 a.m.
3 My Mom
5 Bagpipes From Baghdad
8 Same Song & Dance
9 We Made You
10 Medicine Ball
12 Stay Wide Awake
13 Old Time's Sake
14 Must Be The Ganja
15 Mr. Mathers
16 Deja Vu
18 Crack A Bottle
19 Steve Berman
20 Underground/Ken Kaniff
Disc #2 Tracklisting
2 Hell Breaks Loose
3 Buffalo Bill
5 Taking My Ball
6 Music Box
7 Drop The Bomb On 'Em