The appropriately named surprise album from Eminem, “Kamikaze,” demonstrates the now 45-year-old’s throwback to his alter ego of “Slim Shady.” Similarly to his older albums, the aging rapper disses many in the rap industry with his classic Eminem style.
“Kamikaze” is considered Eminem’s “revenge” album, focusing on the critics that targeted “Revival,” his previous album and the rappers that have taken over the mainstream. Through his iconic style of dissing and mocking, he strikes back at almost everyone from mumble rappers, to Drake, to Donald Trump.
“These rappers are like Hunger Games. One minute, they’re mocking JAY, next minute, they get their style from Migos or they copy Drake,” Eminem said in his song, “Fall.”
In addition, his mocking tone is also visible in the opening of “Not Alike,” using the song structure of Migos’ hit “Bad and Boujee” to demonstrate how easy it is to put a weak line on top of an overused beat.
There are only a few exceptions of his approval, such as in “The Ringer,” when he raps “I’m gonna crumble you…if you ain’t Joyner. If you ain’t Kendrick or Cole or Sean.”
Where people have a problem with this album is the organization and style of it as well as his ranting tone. The album seems to be focused on replying to the response to the crash and burn of “Revival,” however it also includes three relationship songs (“Normal,” “Nice Guy,” and “Good Guy”), one song (“Stepping Stone”) that is meant for his D-12 group mates, and one song (“Venom”) that is from an upcoming movie soundtrack.
If you look at the list of songs in order, it starts with three decent diss raps that work well together, then a skit, then a song about an abusive relationship, then another skit, then a reminiscing rap, then three more diss raps, two relationship songs again, and ending with a song from the “Venom” soundtrack. Overall, just listening to it shows a very inconsistent flow. While “Stepping Stone” was not terrible, the relationship songs, “Normal,” “Nice Guy,” and “Good Guy,” are really out of place and do not make the album better or provide other angles. In addition, his tone throughout quite a few of the songs make him appear old and bitter, as he lists his thoughts on why “Revival” failed.
However, there have been some good songs and especially gold lyrics.
One such example is on “Greatest,” where he shouts, “Revival didn’t go viral” to the beat of Kendrick Lamar’s hit “Humble.”
Furthermore, the sales hit 434 thousand equivalent album units and hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200 this week. Despite the problems with the album, it did do well commercially.
“Kamikaze” is a significant improvement from “Revival,” but has some flaws through the culmination of this album. However, it did do well in sales, despite the surprise factor of Eminem dropping the album without it being promoted.