Say what you want about Eminem, but you can’t deny he is one of the greatest rappers of all time. From his offensive humor, storytelling ability and his thought-provoking lyrics, Marshall Mathers has always brought something fresh to the rap game, and Music to Be Murdered By is no exception.

In his typical “do whatever I want” fashion, Eminem dropped this album without any promotion. The album is a love letter to Alfred Hitchcock’s 1958 album Music to Be Murdered By. Mathers uses samples of Hitchcock’s voice throughout the album, often to transition into a different sound or start the next track. The beats really help convey a creepy, haunting tone of the album. Not all songs are like this, but the ones that aren’t are still very catchy.

Eminem spits lyrical bullets in this album, with layers of meaning behind the words. There were lines so clever they made me gasp. His flow is fantastic, and not once does his rapping take you out of the song. And unlike in the past, Eminem never ruins a bar with a cringe line in Music to Be Murdered By.

My biggest issue with this album? The features. Royce da 5’9” is featured on three tracks, and I’m not a fan of his verses. The worst feature is Anderson .Paak’s, whose rapping on “Lock It Up” is annoying. Ed Sheeran was fine in “Those Kinda Nights,” but I don’t think Eminem and Sheeran have ever meshed well. The two best features were Young M.A and Juice WRLD.

This album was different then Eminem’s other recent work — he released an album in 2017 and another in 2018, after having taken a break after his 2013 album The Marshall Mathers LP2. Some might think that’s for the best; others might not. For me, this album was a pleasant surprise, and a reminder to the world that Eminem remains a lyrical genius in the rap game.

Isaiah Delgado-Flores earned his GED and plans to study at Santa Fe Community College. Contact him at bubbadukes2002@gmail.com.

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