I was among the few that got too hyped and excited when I learned, courtesy of The Shaderoom, that Eminem was attempting a comeback. Mind you, this was announced in 2016. I waited anxiously in baited breath for his late-career ninth studio album. Only for the album to leak in 2017. Translation, the singles were doing so badly that they had to release the whole album.
As a Slim Shady stan, I was albeit dissapointed in Revival. First off, it had way too many pop features. His first single Walk on Water was hard to chew on. The only saving grace being Beyonce featuring on the track. And even that couldn’t really redeem it.
At the risk of sounding cynical, Eminem was trying too hard to be woke on the 19-track album. It was like he purposed to form a rallying cry against injustice, racism and corporate greed, but such topics seems to have weighed down on an artist whose kinetic lyricism relies on sheer impulse. The decision to take on such topics, no matter how well-intentioned, result in songs such as Untouchable and Chloraseptic failing to take flight.The majority of Revival is, well, a revival: a collection of raps without much of a narrative arc.
In his early Slim Shady years, his controversial lyrics, remember Kim, fueled his fire. He was a young man thriving in his craft. But years later, he’s older, well-fed, and in possession of pretty much every accolade there is to acquire. The Slim Shady suit no longer fits; once the outsider, he’s now the establishment. If Slim Shady fed on hate, what does he do now that he’s beloved? What motivates a healthy, sober, 45-year-old father with enough money for several lifetimes?
Revival is a heavy but decent album, after listening to it a couple of times. It does not contain any of his best work and some may even argue, it left a dent on his legacy. It does contain some standout tracks, somewhat.
That BET cypher he did was pretty dope though.
Full Track List;
- Walk On Water Ft Beyonce
- Chloraseptic Ft Phresher
- River Ft Ed Sheeran
- Remind Me (Intro)
- Remind Me
- Revival Interlude
- Like Home Ft Alicia Keys
- Bad Husband Ft X Ambassadors
- Tragic Endings Ft Skylar Grey
- Nowhere Ft Kehlani
- Need Me Ft Pink
- In Your Head
Overall Rating – 4/10