Throughout the relatively brief history of the genre, there have been few hip hop artists to put out more than one or two genuinely great albums.
Think about it: Biggie & 2pac didn’t have much of a chance. Nas has forever been on a pursuit to match the intensity & lyricism of “Illmatic”. Dre has two, outside of NWA (maybe three, if “Detox” ever sees the light of day). Jay Z is, well, debatable: I’d give him the benefit of the doubt, and say three– “Reasonable Doubt”, “The Blueprint”, and “The Black Album”. But, he’s certainly the exception to the rule. Snoop had one. Wu-Tang had one. DMX had one. 50 had one. Do I need to continue…?
Then, there’s Eminem. “The Slim Shady LP” & “The Marshall Mathers LP” are certainly worthy of much praise. I loved “The Eminem Show” too, honestly. “Encore”, well, sucked. Three out of four though, ain’t bad.
After an extended hiatus, Slim has graced us with three more albums since 2009: “Relapse”, “Recovery”, and the recently-released “MMLP2”. The latter two are good, without question. “Relapse” –eh, a song or two.
Imagine, if you would, that you had the opportunity to take those latest three albums, & combine them into a masterpiece. Take your favorites, & leave the rest. A virtual foray into the Hip Hop Hall of Fame.
Such an opportunity, unfortunately, does not exist in the real world. But that sure as hell doesn’t mean we can’t have some fun with it…
I’ve put together tracks from the three Eminem albums since 2009 to create what I feel is an undeniably perfect album. A never-skip. Something to start on the walk to work & not have to hit a button on the way. You get the idea.
Here’s mine; in fact, I created a playlist for it & everything. Agree? Disagree? Let me know you choices!
1. Dr. West (Skit)*
2. Bad Guy***
3. Won’t Back Down (f/ P!nk)**
4. Talkin’ 2 Myself (f/ Kobe)**
6. Almost Famous**
8. Love the Way You Lie (f/ Rhianna)**
10. Mr. Mathers*
11. Deja Vu*
12. Not Afraid**
13. Rhyme or Reason***
14. Love Game (f/ Kendrick Lamar)***
15. Rap God***
17. The Monster (f/ Rhianna)***
18. No Love (f/ Lil Wayne)**
19. Evil Twin***
21. Headlights (f/ Nate Ruess)***
22. Wicked Ways (f/ X Ambassador)***
23. So Far***
* = “Relapse”
** = “Recovery”
*** = “MMLP2”