* out of 4
Even by his own standards, Eminem's last album, “Recovery,” was particularly divisive. Stans couldn't even agree to disagree about Shady's new direction on the 2010 release, which was filled with rock-based beats and wailing hooks from Skylar Grey, and had half his fans lamenting his return while the rest bought more than 4 million copies of the record.
Em's new song, "Survival," sounds like more of the same. You knew it was going to be that way when they announced it was debuting in the new "Call of Duty" trailer. The beat sounds super-aggro, based around a distorted guitar sample and subject to another overly lamentful pop hook, this time courtesy of Liz Rodrigues.
The new song isn't a single, but allegedly will appear on the new, yet-to-be-named album Eminem is due to drop later this year. So if you liked "Recovery's” bombastic beats and Shady rapping like a cat stuffed in a sack, it looks as if you can be ready to enjoy some more of that.
While his new choice of production might just not be for everyone, it's almost possible to measure his lyrical dropoff, where he's gone from staking a claim to "Best Rapper Alive" to serving up amateur-level pu-pu platters like: "Wasn't ready to be a millionaire/I was ill-prepared/ I was prepared to be ill though/the skill was there."
Let's just hope this track stays in the "CoD" commercial, stays off the album, and we can forget about it. Because that's what this song deserves (and we do too).
Adam Lukach is a RedEye special contributor.
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