While not reviewed at the time, this album is important to the newest Eminem album review, so this release has been revisited.
A lot of people think that this is a bad album, but that has been misconstrued. This album is full of personal growth that is only natural considering how long Eminem has been rapping for. He is not the same angry young man, until everyone set him off over this.
The production is not as grimy and aggressive as previous releases, but that is the point. The atmosphere created by the beats fits the message of the songs well. The only issue really is that sometimes the backings are slightly too loud for the lyrics to be crystal clear, but this is not a huge issue.
The lyricism is amazing with Eminem keeping up his absolute top level lyrical wit and skill. Instead of using his talent to describe violent scenarios, he puts them to work with more conscious rhymes and more emotional story telling. Eminem does not miss a step and proves his pen is as sharp as ever.
The features are more pop centered on this album, but all contribute strongly. They all have a softer touch to add to the messages on this as well as reinforcing the same messages as well. A few more rap features could appease more of the masses, but might take from what this album is trying to say.
Overall, this is an album that was released to try to show the world that Eminem was stepping up and was trying to tell America something and instead all that people seemed to take from it was that he has grown as a human being and that they don’t like that. Eminem was right to release a follow up scathing people’s responses.
This is a pop album with definite Hip Hop roots. While Nicki is known to the general public for her hit pop songs, this project shows she has the lyrical ability to be playing around with some of the Hip Hop heavyweights. However the number of tracks trying to appeal to a wider audience stops this from becoming a purely Hip Hop project.
The production is good and works well with Nicki’s flow. The beats are very well put together and are very modern in sound. This helps enforce the feeling that Nicki is at the forefront of Hip Hop culture and builds atmosphere on the tracks. However it would be interesting to see Nicki try to tackle production with a bit more diversity away from pop culture and more to the streets.
The lyricism is there and is done very well. While not the most complex it is very effective in creating entertaining songs that are easy to listen to and have some good imagery to go with them. Nicki changes her style a couple times which helps to bring a higher level of depth to the project and makes it more enjoyable to listen to.
The features are good and help add some flavour to the mixing pot. Bringing the A-list to this project helps show that Nicki is amoung the elite in the rap game, however also bringing her label mates and rappers who she has good chemistry with makes more cohesive tracks. All of this points towards a good track list and a smooth listen.
Overall, this is a good project if you like Hip Hop music that is blended with pop to create a project that could appeal to both audiences. This is an enjoyable listen and while not being a purist Hip Hops ideal project, it can still be enjoyable.