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The Earliest Bird: Top New Recorded Release 8-5-22 – 8-11-22, Eminem’s “Curtain Call 2” Reviewed

When you take Eminem’s Curtain Call from 2005 and compare it to Eminem Curtain Call 2, which dropped today, it should be stopped as an unfair fight. In 2005 Eminem was hustling his second to his fourth albums, three tentpoles of rap, not white rap, just rap, and the album was a victory lap from “My Name…” ” to “Cleaning Out My Closet” with a stop at the etymology of a “Stan”… and it still failed to include “Square Dancing”, in 24 songs. Curtain 2 has 35 songs taking us through six albums which proved that Slim Shady was vastly more popular than Marshall Mathews and that, more or less, “Love The Way You Lie” was a one off he couldn’t replicate even with Beyonce, even with Rihanna herself.

Still, while song for song the flow is always breathtaking, the storylines, in a WWE way, are not much happening. Hearing about Eminem as a nodding off drug addict being rushed to emergency, during his six year derailment is a major bummer not a warning. Eminem realized the problem (and how) and soon dropped the celebrity horrorshow Relapse and was back on top for awhile. The last time I saw him was the hugely disappointing set at Gov Ball in 2018 (though I did get a great tee!), stuck carrying one of his worst albums, Kamikaze (here).

So this is what you are getting with Curtain Call 2 via Expedia (here);

  1. “Godzilla” (feat. Juice Wrld) (from Music to Be Murdered By) 3:30
  2. “Lucky You” (feat. Joyner Lucas) (from Kamikaze) 4:04
  3. “Lighters” (Bad Meets Evil feat. Bruno Mars) (from Hell: The Sequel) 5:03
  4. “Gnat” (from Music to Be Murdered By) 3:44
  5. “Cinderella Man” (from Recovery) 4:39
  6. “Walk on Water” (feat. Beyoncé) (from Revival) 5:04
  7. “Rap God” (from The Marshall Mathers LP 2) 6:03
  8. “Love the Way You Lie” (feat. Rihanna) (from Recovery) 4:23
  9. “Won’t Back Down” (feat. Pink) (from Recovery) 4:25
  10. “Higher” (from Music to Be Murdered By) 3:42
  11. “Berzerk” (from The Marshall Mathers LP 2) 3:58
  12. “Not Afraid” (from Recovery) 4:10
  13. “From the D 2 the LBC” (feat. Snoop Dogg) 3:35
  14. “Nowhere Fast” (feat. Kehlani) (from Revival) 4:24
  15. “Fall” (from Kamikaze) 4:22
  16. “Phenomenal” (from Southpaw) 4:42
  17. “Fast Lane” (from Hell: The Sequel) 4:09
  18. “You’re Never Over” (from Recovery) 5:05

    Disc 2
    No. Title Length
  19. “3 a.m.” (from Relapse) 5:19
  20. “Space Bound” (from Recovery) 4:38
  21. “Beautiful” (from Relapse) 6:32
  22. “The Monster” (feat. Rihanna) (from The Marshall Mathers LP 2) 4:10
  23. “Venom” (from Kamikaze) 4:29
  24. “Crack a Bottle” (feat. Dr. Dre & 50 Cent) (from Relapse) 4:57
  25. “Is This Love (’09)” (feat. 50 Cent) 3:32
  26. “River” (feat. Ed Sheeran) (from Revival) 3:41
  27. “Survival” (from The Marshall Mathers LP 2) 4:32
  28. “Best Friend” (Yelawolf feat. Eminem) (from Love Story) 5:14
  29. “Darkness” (from Music to Be Murdered By) 5:37
  30. “Kings Never Die” (feat. Gwen Stefani) (from Southpaw) 4:56
  31. “No Love” (feat. Lil Wayne) (from Recovery) 5:00
  32. “Headlights” (feat. Nate Ruess) (from The Marshall Mathers LP2) 5:43
  33. “The King and I” (feat. CeeLo Green) (from Elvis) 3:14
  34. “Farewell” (from Music to Be Murdered By) 4:07
  35. “Rap God” (Mr. Cii Remix) (from The Marshall Mathers LP 2) 6:15

Curtain Call 2 flows with stamina and taken out of context, the early Joyce Manor featured “Lucky You” is revelatory, improves the songs though nothing has you gobsmacked and while there are few surprises here, there is more than one “Crack The bottle”. He isn’t the stroppy teenage 8 Mile kid anymore, he lost his Rocky, but he is a major rock star and he can demand enough attention to maintain a career he doesn’t appear to have so much interest in. More Slim than Marshall, he still Marshalls out on great songs with Gwen Stefani, Ed Sheeran, P!nk and more. And topped it off with this years brilliant re-work of “Jailhouse Rock” on “Elvis And Me”. He is at his worse when he is at his most sincere and “Darkness” (about murders in High School) is awful.

More or less, it is what he is and answers the question what happens to badass reprobates with no respect for anything, especially corrupt politicians and narcissistic rock stars… he becomes respectable.

Grade: B+

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