Review Summary: Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.
In case you couldn't tell, yours truly is from the great and wonderful state of Arkansas, home of Sleazy Bill himself, and a host of other characters. We have a saying in Arkansas that demonstrates the toughness and resolve of our people - when one man disrespects another, we say "You are now in Arkansas." This threat, especially outside of the great state, is a sign you have crossed the line with an Arkansan. You've broken the honor code, defiled the man's name, or something equally reprehensible. In layman's terms, it's time for a butt stomping.
After the pain and suffering Eminem has endured since the release of the misunderstood masterpiece Kamikaze
, it's no wonder the follow-up is perhaps the Eminator's angriest record to date. Music to Be Murdered By
could have easily been written by an Arkansan scorned. This is Marshall's way of telling the world that all our ass
es are in Arkansas, and we're here to stay until Em's done serving up butt-rammings, butt rammings that are much deserved. We fart on one of the great artists of all time, and this is what we get.
Granted, if the result of our unrelenting abuse of Professor Mathers is art this pungent, a piece of music this fresh and exciting, maybe we should up the ante with our barbed farts of criticism. I can truly feel the emotions on this album. A noted ex-drug addict, this album sounds like the embodiment of a fog clearing and sobriety setting in. The stages of grief are easily represented in El Emerino's discography, and here we have the most important stage for an artist: anger. Eminem could've called this album Saint Anger
and I believe Metallica would have respected this decision so much that they would rename their own album with the same title. Lars is of a similar disposition to Mr. Mathers himself, so he surely knows where criticism can drive a man. He also knows that the best remedy is to not care what the people say, or as I call them, the sheeple.
"Darkness" is the most poignant track, the piece which sums up the album's theme quite nicely. Succinctness often eludes critics who prefer to have meanings spelled out for them. The lyrics to "Darkness" give me chills. One line to the next, it's hard to tell if Eminem is having a nervous breakdown in real time or if he's merely yanking our bungholes, tickling it with a feather like a worm that's lodged itself deep within. You scratch, but the itch remains the same. Come on down to Arkansas.