Listen Up: Wednesday, June27, 2002
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
Eminem

The Eminem Show (Aftermath Records)

By Adam Woodyard

There are a lot of people who dislike 28-year-old Marshall Mathers, and there are a lot of people who just outright hate him. Maybe they feel confusion or disgust for Mathers himself, for shamelessly appropriating a black art form. Or they dislike his musical personae, like the speaker in 2001’s “Stan,” who responds to an obsessed fan, or the artiste who exploits his own 6-year-old daughter’s voice on “My Dad’s Gone Crazy,” the final track on Eminem’s latest, The Eminem Show. Thing is, Em doesn’t seem to mind the attention.

Already a staple on local radio and MTV, the disc’s first single, “Without Me,” isn’t as weird or dark as the rest of the album. The tune is by far the most light-hearted track on Show. It’s fitting that the record company wants to play it safe by releasing this record first, what with its big hook and catchy “nah, nah, nah, NAH-nah” refrain. Movie execs behind Eminem, though, want you to know that he can be dead serious at times. The hook for “Cleanin’ Out My Closet” appears in the trailer to Em’s upcoming dramatic debut, 8 Mile: “Mama / I never meant to hurt you / I never meant to make you cry / But tonight I’m cleanin’ out my closet.”

This is arguably the disc’s most chilling track, as Em squeezes every last bit of rage he has left toward the woman who sued him for defamation in 2000 to make a point. Is this victim art? It’s hard to tell. All that matters anyway is what the song sounds like, and this one appears credible, truthful, artistic.

Em may not necessarily want to make you feel good or bad or even feel anything at all. But listening to the darkest instincts and rawest anger of a fellow human being, you can’t help but feel something. If that’s not what you want from your music, then maybe you should go right on hating the guy without hearing him.


Email this Article...

Back to Top


Copyright 2002 to 2017 FW Weekly.
3311 Hamilton Ave. Fort Worth, TX 76107
Phone: (817) 321-9700 - Fax: (817) 335-9575 - Email Contact
Archive System by PrimeSite Web Solutions