Lyrical Analysis: “Rap God” by Eminem

The latest track released from the forthcoming Marshall Mathers LP2, “Rap God,” has turned much of the general public against the self-proclaimed “immortal rap god,” Eminem.  This is primarily due to the second half of the second verse of the aforementioned song, where Eminem mentions a homophobic slur while discussing a “little gay looking boy.”  While this bit may be construed as offensive, it is not nearly as insulting as the remark that Drake and J. Cole made in “Jodeci Freestyle” regarding Autism being synonymous with retardation.

To be fair, Drake and J. Cole have since publicly apologized and removed the offensive line from the song. Conversely, it does not seem as though Eminem will respond to the public in an equally respectable manner.  This assumption is supported by another quote: “See if I get away with it now that I ain’t as big as I was.” That line followed Eminem’s recollection of a line regarding the Columbine shooting from “I’m Back,” off of Marshall Mathers LP[1].  The 41-year-old rapper seems to be making a point to show that he still has that inner rage and angst fueling his real rhymes. After all, insults, true stories, real emotions, and the ability to spit a rhyme are what brought him to fame in the first place.  The last element is also clearly exhibited in “Rap God” via his lightning speed rapping about halfway into the track.

The main concept of the song is to show new school rappers that they need to take lessons from the old school.  Between the lyrics and their verbal execution, Eminem surely makes his point and offers momentous opportunities for backlash from the media, the general public, and other musicians, specifically in the hip-hop scene.

 

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