Eminem, who has been successfully making his own variations on the rap genre for some time, is here with his new single Berzerk – a heavily guitar and rock beat driven rap track, as you might expect with Rick Rubin on the production side of the release.
Berzerk will be appearing on The Marshall Mathers LP 2 album which is scheduled for release in November. This song features a verse that could be compared to early Beastie Boys – who there is a sample of in the verse – suggesting that this similarity is intentional. The chorus, on the other hand, is far more comparable to the newer mainstream rap music with it’s vocal harmonies and heavy drum loop. This change is very effective, as just when you’re getting used the retro feeling of the verses, the modern kicks in with the chorus and keeps your interest peaked throughout the song.
I wouldn’t say that this song would be best for all kinds of Eminem fans. If you enjoyed Recovery in particular, then this single won’t be quite your cup of tea – however, if you were a fan of the first Marshall Mathers LP or you’re a lover of Rubin’s other work as a producer then this will be more to your tastes. I can’t help but hope as I listen to this song that Eminem and Rubin will be doing more work together in the future, because their work on this single has created a song that grows on you more and more with every listen – which is no easy task when you enjoy the song so much on the first hearing.
All in all, I believe that this track will be most enjoyed by those who go in with open ears and the right expectations. In this case, those right expectations would be for a song that has a pleasant mixture of modern and retro rap grooves – but also enough of Eminem’s classic features for it to appeal to some of his older fans. But don’t just believe me, go give it a listen.
::: covering the latest live events in London (UK) for RenownedForSound.com