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Review: Eminem – Recovery

Eminem is back with his seventh studio album and his second offering in just 13 months. Originally billed as Relapse 2, a follow up to his self-criticised Relapse album released in the May 2009, the new album was renamed ‘Recovery’ to break with the slightly immature and fluffy nature of Eminem’s previous two albums.

The cover of Eminem's new album - Recovery (released 21st June 2010). Picture: Phil Campbell

On Recovery, released on Dr. Dre’s Aftermath Records, the controversial rapper rediscovers his darker, more serious side which saw him rise to fame with ‘the Slim Shady LP’ (1999) and later, The Marshall Mathers LP’ (2000). Doing away with immature topics and toilet humour which has plagued his two previous albums: Relapse (2009) and Encore (2004), the new album is an uncompromising mix of complex, earth-shattering beats and melodic choruses accompanied by Eminem’s most serious and meaningful lyrics for a decade.

On the album, Eminem teams up with artists such as Pink and Rhianna on tracks entitled ‘won’t back down’ and ‘love the way you lie’, the latter of which is a radio friendly, guaranteed single with the potential to become the anthem of summer for many.

A new chapter

Other highlights include ‘no love’ on which the Detroit-born rapper teams up with hot property Lil’ Wayne to deliver a stunning lyrical performance accompanied by a catchy chorus featuring a sample of 1993 club hit ‘What is love?’ by Haddaway.

Eminem has worked with long term producing partner Dr. Dre to successfully achieve the heavy-hitting basslines which resemble Hip Hop’s golden era of the late nineties. But he has also created new partnerships with such producers as Just Blaze and DJ Khalil among others.

Put simply, this album was never likely to recapture the exact mood of the two that made Eminem a household name at the turn of the millennium. But it comes closer than many expected, whilst at the same time, introducing an incredible new chapter of Eminem’s extraordinary career.

Since 2000, Eminem has released albums which have been playable, without necessarily featuring any ‘timeless classics’. In Recovery, he has finally delivered a new sound which will reinvigorate people’s love for the troubled star, and see demand for a UK tour smash through roof several times over. These tracks will be played for years to come.

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