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OPINION: Voice of our generation

Eminem’s next album in progress, promises depth

Published: Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, July 25, 2012 21:07

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OPINION: Voice of our generation

Eminem’s next album in progress, promises depth

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It’s been a couple years since Eminem resurfaced from his five-year hiatus from the spotlight, releasing chart-topping albums in 2009 and 2010. Now he said he’s back in the studio for his eighth solo album.Eminem recently told Hot 97’s Peter Rosenberg he has begun work on his next record. He said, “I’m starting to toy [with the next solo album].” The timing couldn’t be more perfect. Coming off a sub-par effort in “Relapse,” he impressed fans when he released “Recovery” the subsequent year. It’s time for his to wow us again.

Against all odds, in the early 2000s, Eminem resonated with disenfranchised suburban youth. His anger and frustration, revealed in frank lyrics, catapulted him to idol-status among our generation.

“All you can see is a sea of people some white and some black
No matter what color, all that matters we’re gathered together
To celebrate for the same cause no matter the weather
If it rains, let it rain, yeah, the wetter the better
They ain’t gon’ stop us, they can’t, we’re stronger now more than ever
They tell us “No,” we say “Yeah”, they tell us “Stop,” we say “Go”

Rebel with a rebel yell, raise hell we gon’ let ‘em know
Stomp, push, shove, mosh, f— Bush
Until they bring our troops home.”

Long regarded as a rapper whose lyrics reflect his personal struggles, “Relapse” sounded more as pandering to the masses rather than a purging of his strife. Far darker and more painful than his earlier work, it lacked substance. “Recovery” more than made up for it and Eminem acknowledged his shortcomings in “Not Afraid.”

“In fact, let’s be honest
That last ‘Relapse’ CD was ehhh
Perhaps I ran them accents into the ground
Relax, I ain’t going back to that now.”

Robert Chistgau said, “But for the first time in his career Eminem settles for sensationalism straight up, and, worse still, makes you wonder whether he ever truly knew the difference. Em, this is not a Slim Shady album. Slim Shady had a lightness about him.”

His next studio album will be his eighth. At this point, no one knows to expect. We have seen Eminem transform from a homophobic, ex-wife bashing “class-clown freshman, dressed like Les Nessman” to a profound lyricist who overcame abuse and addiction.

Eminem said, “I just wanna thank everybody for bein’ so patient, bearin’ with me over these last couple of years while I figure this shit out.”

For those of us who can’t wait until next year for our Slim Shady fix, he will appear in Ice-T’s documentary “Something from Nothing: The Art of Rap,” released in theaters June 15.

“Something from Nothing: The Art of Rap” is an official selection for Sundance Film Festival 2012 and illustrates the origins and rise of hip-hop and rap. Often proclaimed as the voice of people, hip-hop and rap allows for the unscripted expression of individuals from the other side of the tracks. Rap lyrics reflect a state of mind and as such are commentary of contemporary society. Although much of today’s hip-hop and rap are declarations of who has the hottest car or the most money, its origins lie in the American dream. And who better to take us there than the godfather of gansta rap, Ice-T.

“Something from Nothing” provides insight into the minds of rap legends — Run-DMC, Mos Def, Snoop Dogg, along with others, and of course, Eminem.

After all, we can never have enough Slim Shady — the voice of this generation — in our lives.


Naila Dhanani is a senior biomedical sciences major and editor in chief of The Battalion.

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