Author(s): David Stubbs
From his fledgling rhymes with New Jacks and D-12 through to chart-busting epics like 'My Name Is', 'The Way I Am', and 'Stan', Eminem's recorded work has been an exercise in lyrical genius, satirical wit and enjoyable gratuitous offensiveness. But Marshall Mathers is not just a mere comic turn. Fuelled by an unhappy and under-privileged upbringing, caught within the slick Dr Dre-crafted rhythms of his music are also condemnations of societal hypocrisy, controversial apparent endorsements of homophobia and narcotic abuse, and some extraordinarily graphic and violent imagery. Juggling his musical and real-life personae of Marshall Mathers, Slim Shady, and Eminem, the scattergun outrage of his best work hides a patchwork of knowing quips, self-referential asides and, bizarrely, a self-righteous, easily offended personal morality. Eminem may be sore, but he's smart, too.