eMusic Review 0
After The Marshall Mathers LP, there was nowhere left for Eminem to build but up. Every major pop artist hits this point in their career sooner or later — the point at which forward motion becomes impossible — but Eminem had the misfortune of hitting it sooner than most. He responded as most artists in his position do: with a bigger, darker, more grandiose version of his most definitive work. The Eminem Show is nominally the final third of his three-act play, but it's mostly a retread of the themes he explored brilliantly on The Marshall Mathers LP, bolstered with added injections of paranoia, bluster, and anxiety.
Still, The Eminem Show contains some of the most compelling pieces of the Eminem jigsaw puzzle. "Cleaning Out My Closet" paints Mathers's Oedipal drama its queasiest shade of black; he has never sounded so shivering and pitiful as he does over its mournful music-box and lightly ticking snare, recalling suffering from "Munchausen's Syndrome" ("My whole life I was made to believe I was sick when I wasn't.") "White America" contains his most vicious rejoinder to media hand-wringing over his lyrics: "Hip-hop was never a problem in Harlem, only in Boston/ After it bothered the… read more »