Showing posts with label d12. Show all posts
Showing posts with label d12. Show all posts

Monday, November 24, 2014

video review: 'shady xv' by eminem & shady records

There are more important - and vastly more enraging - issues going on tonight, but still, the album is worth talking about. Worth your time.

Next up... Christ, another Rick Ross album. Really?

album review: 'shady xv' by eminem & shady records

I wish I had a better feeling about this album going into it than I did.

See, when I heard Eminem was talking about launching a collaboration album, I immediately had very real concerns, because I remembered when this happened eight years ago with Eminem Presents: The Re-Up, a record that had a few pretty decent songs but really was nothing all that special. I'll reiterate what I said back in March when I reviewed the Young Money compilation project, that these sorts of records are made for three purposes: reassert the strengths of the old talent; show some cool interplay across your label; and show off the new guys.

And yet Shady Records is in a bit of an odd position. In comparison with its other rap label peers, it's proved to have a shaky track record of establishing definitive new stars. Albums from Yelawolf and Slaughterhouse proved to be non-starters even despite their very real talent, and while the Bad Meets Evil project was the biggest shot of adrenaline to Royce de 5'9'''s career possible, the last EP Hell: The Sequel hasn't exactly been a record I've really revisited outside of maybe one or two songs. That's not saying I wouldn't enjoy the wordplay of records like Shady XV, but I definitely did not have high expectations.

And there were other issues too, with the lead-off single 'Guts Over Fear' being one of the Eminem's least interesting opening singles for a project ever, and while I understood bringing on Sia and Skylar Grey for hooks, why the hell was Danny Brown, DeJ Loaf, Trick Trick, and Big Sean on this album? Sure, I get it, Detroit rappers, but wouldn't it make more sense to stick with your label if you're looking to push them? And while I get putting money behind Danny Brown and DeJ Loaf, Trick-Trick hasn't been relevant in years and Big Sean shouldn't be relevant, period. And the fact that this album was also being included with a disc of former Shady Records 'hits', most of which are from artists who are no longer signed, screamed of either Interscope's interference to guarantee their investment, or pure desperation.

But you know, this is Eminem, and even though his track record has been inconsistent, he's still got a solid group of rappers behind him, so this might be pretty solid, right?