Relapse

Music review by
Jacqueline Rupp, Common Sense Media
Relapse Music Poster Image
Social value lost in glorification of pills, rape, murder.

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 13 reviews

Kids say

age 14+
Based on 43 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive messages

This album is loaded with all sorts of contemptible behavior, including multiple descriptions of rape, murder, and drug addiction.

Violence

Where to begin? Maybe the serial killing sprees, the premeditated rapes or the references to infanticide? The ultra-violent lyrics speak fro themselves.“I see my target…approach a tender young girl by the name of Brenda and I pretend to befriend her, sit down beside her like a spider, hi there girl you mighta heard of me before, see wh-re you’re the kinda’ girl that I’d a-ssault and rape.”  “Drop kick the b-tch before her second trimester.” Brutalizing women is a constant theme on the album and multiple songs discuss preying on innocent young women. On the track Same Some and Dance, Eminem describes strangling Lindsay Lohan and killing Britney Spears (after they both take prescription drugs). “Slowly she gets in and I begin to lynch her, with 66 inches of extension cord.”

Sex

Most of the explicit sexual content on the album is focused on humiliating and degrading women -- that is when the songs aren't about raping someone. “My little friend’s waiting to say hello, the way your t—ties are wiggling and your booties shakin’ like Jell-O.”

Language

Profanity is spattered throughout the song lyrics and used casually throughout the entire album. Besides the four-letter words, the grotesque and sociopathic lyrics are just as inappropriate.

Consumerism
Drinking, drugs & smoking

One of the major themes of the album is drug addiction. Eminen rattles off a litany of prescription drug brands throughout the album, so much so that he nearly covers the entire pharmaceutical department. On the album Eminem recounts his struggles with his recent drug addiction, however there are also times when he makes light of "popping pills" and it's portrayed as a casual and fun activity.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this album glorifyies rape and murder, and many tracks portray Eminem as a serial killer. Eminem also raps about his addiction to prescription drugs, which includes the brand names of pills.

User Reviews

Adult Written byJitty July 18, 2010

This is a great album if you like horrorcore.

I'm glad in your little review your ignorant idiots here at "Commonsense" missed out on songs such as, "My Mom" and "Beautiful... Continue reading
Parent of a 4 year old Written bytrevor johnson October 3, 2009
Teen, 14 years old Written bymcmovie123 July 5, 2010

liked it

Look i know his music swares and has sex in it and violence i think alot of people dont know what eminem has been through.
Teen, 13 years old Written byLinkTech267 April 16, 2016

Probably Em's most Explict CD, but not as terrible as CSM says it is.

Yes, this album is full of violent and sexual content, and plenty of swearing and drugs. My least favorite songs are Must Be The Ganja, Insane, My Mom, and Crac... Continue reading

What's the story?

It's been several years since the world was exposed to Slim Shady's brand of warped rap. RELAPSE is a voluminous 20-track release that sees Eminem back on the music scene after recovering from an addiction to prescription drugs. The theme of addiction is at the center of this CD, but the usual Eminem themes of violence against women and shock-value lyrics play a big role.

Is it any good?

Revolting, nauseating, even repulsive: just a few of the emotions that come up after listening to this CD. But that's exactly the reaction the rapper wants to elicit. The line, "How can he say that?" actually appears on one track. But the deplorable, misogynistic rhymes aren't the worst part of the album. Eminem's self-absorbed rehashing and bashing of staid topics make this album seem less than original. His usually inspired social commentary isn't timely or relevant here, and at a certain point his sociopathic self-aggrandizing becomes monotonous. The few glimmers of hope can be found on a few tracks like "Déjà vu" and "Beautiful," where the artist speaks chillingly and realistically about the continued battle against his addiction.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the effect that listening to songs that celebrate raping and murdering women might have on young listeners The songs are fiction, but do you think it's easy to get wrapped up in the message and have trouble separating fantasy from reality?

Music details

  • Artist: Eminem
  • Release date: May 19, 2009
  • Label: Shady Records
  • Genre: Rap
  • Parental advisory: Yes
  • Edited version available: Yes

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