Thursday, August 05, 2010

Eminem Crit

I generally don't give White rappers much of a shot. Sorry. I like my White rappers like 3rd Bass: conscious of their White privilege and rapping against it. I never was a fan of Eminem. To me, he was just a White guy with skills that played into everything he could for fame. From his routine silly 1st simgle/video from each album, to his fabricated trailer park cache, to his angry at everything for no fuckin reason. Of course, there was also his strong tendencies towards sexism and homophobia. While both of those may be prominent in hip hop at large, unfortunately, when a member of the ruling strata (i.e. White male) says them, they take on a whole different dynamic.

Em was due for a comeback apparently. The first salvo of which was his verse on 'Forever.' That verse was heralded as amazing but I felt it put on display Em's shortcomings when juxtaposed with Weezy and Yeezy (hell, even Drake killed it on that song!). Eminem YELLS his verses and doesn't seem to have any speed but fast (which he acknowledges on the track).

Then I started hearing tracks off Eminem's Recovery... and I liked them. He definitely has skills. I suppose he always had them but rapping about killing your ex wife in a clever way smells less like real hip hop to me and more like what Juggalos listen to. The beats also felt stronger. Then I found out that he worked with Just Blaze and other non-Dr Dre producers on the album and it made some sense. Stronger beats.

Em teamed up with a lot of female singers apparently. He has a really catchy song with Rihanna. I hear it on the radio enough... but the lyrics...
Does anyone else find it a little unsavory to hear Rihanna, who might I remind you was beaten to a fuckin pulp by her abusive boyfriend Chris Brown, on a hook singing:
I like
The way it hurts
Just gonna stand there
And hear me cry
But that's alright
Because I love
The way you lie

Em follows it up with:
If she ever tries to fucking leave again
I'mma tie her to the bed
And set the house on fire

OK OK Perhaps it is a commentary on abuse. Perhaps it is just a dramatic story. Then I saw the video:

If there is any anti-abuse message in that Joseph Kahn video, it is completely lost in the romanticizing of the obviously abusive relationship.


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