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Bad Meets Evil “Hell: The Sequel” Review

After splitting in the early 2000’s due to Royce da 5’9”’s dispute with Eminem’s group D12, Bad (Royce) Meets Evil (Eminem) have returned to put their stamp on what has already been a very interesting year in Hip Hop with their offering Hell: The Sequel. It’s fair to say that things have changed since the Detroit rappers first collaborated on Eminem’s Slim Shady LP in 1999; Eminem is now considered by many as the greatest rapper that ever lived, selling nearly 90 million records worldwide, whilst collecting 13 Grammy Awards along the way. Royce on the other hand has released four albums that have all failed to break into the top 100 and has spent time ghostwriting for the likes of Dr. Dre. As said on Royce’s Twitter page “Everything come backs full circle,” and as suggested on the track “Living Proof” (available on the deluxe edition of the release) this album could mark his return to form and relaunch his “free-falling” career.

The album opener “Welcome 2 Hell” starts with the crackling of fiery embers before Eminem’s voice emerges with the message “I told you we would be back, now welcome to hell.” This statement implies the intention behind the entire recording, which is to resurrect Bad Meets Evil and begin right where they left off roughly a decade ago. There are a barrage of formidable tracks on the EP including the lead single “Fast Lane,” which features a chill hook that could have come straight off last year’s critically acclaimed Big Boi album Sir Lucious Left Foot. Both lyrically and delivery-wise Eminem and Royce complement each other perfectly in the track, with Royce ultimately spitting my favorite line from the EP, “Hanging from his balls/From the horn of a unicorn.” The controversial “A Kiss” is also a highlight on the album, with Eminem rapping “Tell Lady Gaga she can quite her job at the post office/She’s still a male lady” over creepy chimes. On occasion it appears that Eminem is carrying the album, but this certainly is not the case on “Living Proof” where Royce takes the lead and shows his true might on the microphone. “Above The Law” is also a showcase of Royce and Eminem’s talent, despite its awful corny hook; in fact the hooks are terrible throughout the album with a few exceptions including the brilliant “I’m On Everything” which shows the two at their strongest and most effective.

The lowest point in the album is most definitely “Lighters” which features Bruno Mars, music’s current vehicle of mainstream success. Having worked with such names as B.o.B and Travie McCoy over the past 12 months, the pop sensation’s collaboration within the dark themes of Bad Meets Evil doesn’t quite make sense. More questionably, why does the track find Royce and Eminem rapping over a beat that sounds like it was produced by Owl City? To generate sales? Not only is the song appalling but feels out of place in an album, a matter made even more awkward when Eminem talks about sticking his penis in Nicki Minaj’s anus in “Fast Lane.” Other tracks that feel equally weak include “Loud Noises,” which suffers from calamitous production and becomes irritating with enthralling strings which lead up to a shrieking “Slaughterhouse!” every 30 seconds. At times it feels that there is too much of Eminem’s Recovery in the Hell‘s genetics which eventually ends up questioning the authenticity of the Bad Meets Evil paring, Royce often appearing a passenger as opposed to an equal contributor. This is evident in the should-have-been-on-Recovery track “Take from Me,” where the acoustic guitar and sombre piano lead up to a catchy chorus which would have fit nicely within the solo album.

Hell: The Sequel is an album that is likely to divide fans down the middle. There is not one solid sound throughout the release, but rather Hell seems to rotate between Em’s earlier material and mainstream pop. There is little common ground among the tracks, which makes the production feel less like a complete album and more like a group of songs hastily thrown together.

[Guest contributor Cameron Jones also blogs at The Audio Beast.]


64 Comments

    It really is an inconsistent album – tracks like “The Reunion” don’t offer up much but then the duo comes back hard with “I’m On Everything,” which is probably one of my favorite tracks of the year at this point.

    • You have got to be the biggest fucking dumbass i have ever seen in my life. Im on Everything is the complete definition of a filler. It is a drug song that is completely misplaced in an era where Eminem has denounced drug use multiple times and swears never to go back to it. Furthermore it is easily the weakest part of the EP with the lyricism being mediocre at best. The best song of this year? I have heard nothing but bad reviews of Im on Everything except from you and the complete idiot of a critic of this review. Also The Reunion not offereing much? Are you stupid or what? The Reunion is vintage shady. Let me guess? You started listening to Eminem when Recovery came out? The Reunion has been praised as the best song on the EP in almost every review i have seen. It is easily the closest to the old Shady we have been since The Eminem Show.

      • Of all the people in the world you’ve come across, I’m the “biggest fucking dumbass” you’ve ever met? Yet you’re saying that the track is immeasurably worse than the Bruno Mars collab? Think you need to get out more Kyle.

        • Sorry for spazzing out haha nothing against you personally man. But, I understand a pop song is definitely out of place on this dark album and a radio hit isnt everyones cup of tea. However, I think in terms of the subject of the song, flow, and lyrically wise Lighters was bette than Im On Everything. You take bruno Mars out of that song an replace the chorus with an Em made one the song easily outshines it. However, as the song is I think its on par with IOE

    Somebody rename this Ep Marshall Mathers part 2, classic!

    • Don’t get over-hyped boy, This EP is damn good but MMLP is beyond classic. They can’t be compared !!!

      • ^^ Agree

      How dare you sir, take it back.

    it’s been said in past interviews and articles that this isnt supposed to sound like a well put together, themed album… because it’s an EP, not an LP album.

    • Throw in the bonus tracks and Hell stands at 11 songs – guess I don’t really see how purposefully not attempting to create a cohesive recording makes up for its inconsistencies though.

      • Its not supposed to be cohesive. Hell: The Sequel is supposed to stand out as a record for true hip hop fans who want pure lyricism and flow in any track. The overall subject of the EP was specifically pointed out to be mixed and contain no overall theme.

    I completely disagree with this review..but reviews are opinions.. and the only thing i ask is that a true review be done without thinking about who you are and what you like, but about what your reviewing, what its saying and how well its done. Fisrt of all, yes an ep, which they said that was a collection of songs..not for an album, that they didnt want to go to waste. That being said, this ep is amazing, it has hints of old Eminem, slim shady, relapse and recovery, and to say the Royce isnt holding his own..is a joke. Lighters isnt weak, if you dont think your a hard ass G..which im 99% sure your not, it has very well written verses, and if your smart, you can find a clever diss in it, stop raggin on how soft it sounds, respect if for being a good all around song, when i read reviews on this song..i imagine the people who say its soft..actually think Ice T is a gangster..and not which is a joke in itself. ..back to ep, it has a mazing songs top to bottom, listen open minded and you’ll find respect..check out ..Above the Law, Take From Me, Welcome 2 Hell, The Reunion ( old Em/ Slim ), Fast Lane..shit all of it..its worth it.. GET YOUR BUZZ ON!!!!!

    • well said buddy this ep is incredible

    • Indeed, any thoughts of this somehow being “weak” while simultaneously praising the “cohesiveness” of Watch the Throne is, in a word, insane. The OP did not make this assertion, but I’m wondering what is this being compared to to even assert some sort of incompleteness.

      The addition of Royce to the session shows the long-held myth that no one can shine on a track with Eminem is not fully true. I guess everyone has a counterpart, and Royce is that to Eminem. I’m not quite convinced that they could successfully compete with eachother–would probably get boring after a while–but together they are a force to be reckoned with…

      I have listened to this EP just about every day. I’ve tried to insert a few listening sessions with Watch the Throne, but I always end up going back to this EP… *EP*!! Are you serious?

      If these are the throw-away songs, goodness–when their album drops (nine-out-of-ten once the Slaughterhouse album drops) it should theoretically shut hip-hop down for a year. The lyrics are well-put together on every song. I’m not fully convinced that “I’m on Everything” is the hottest song on the EP…especially when it is with “Take From Me” (although I strongly dislike the premise of this song since Eminem is one of the greatest sellers of albums in Rap…kind of seems ironic to me), “Above the Law”, “Loud Noises” (really? weak? how could you even hear the beat with the lyrics that are coming from this five-some–amazing…yes, even Joe Buddens), “Welcome 2 Hell”…seriously, the whole EP… This is well worth the $9.99 I paid for it…

      Opinions are like anuses, I guess…

    This review really annoyed me, because it’s clear you are very familiar with Eminem’s career, but just took a cursory glance at Wikipedia & Twitter for Royce.

    So, here is the story on Royce’s career: He worked with Eminem on his 2002 debut LP “Rock City,” which was a mixed bag. Then he had a falling out with Eminem and a beef with D12. He released his critically acclaimed sophomore album “Death Is Certain,” which was listed by many critics as one of the best rap albums of the year. He follows it up with the disappointing third album, “Independents’ Day,” and is sent to in prison for a year due to a DUI. Then he came back roaring with the smash hit mixtape “The Bar Exam,” hosted by DJ Premier, followed quickly by its sequel, “The Bar Exam 2.” These are HUGE online. At this time, 2008, Royce is one of the hottest independent MC’s, and has a crazy buzz on the Net. He joins forces with Joe Budden, Crooked I & Joell Ortiz to form the group “Slaughterhouse.” Their debut album has modest sales, but positive reviews, and a HUGE cult following online. Around this time Royce patches things up with Eminem & D12, drops the okay “The Bar Exam 3″, and the great album “Street Hop,” executive produced by DJ Premier. And here we are with Bad Meets Evil.

    In other words, Royce has been one of the hottest independent MC’s for the past five years. He has two great albums (Death Is Certain, Street Hop), an acclaimed mixtape series (The Bar Exam), and a laundry list of classic songs with DJ Premier. You make it sound as if his career has been one big failure, with record sales being the only way to measure success.

    Then you call Royce a “passenger” on the many songs. How is Royce a passenger? Royce matches Eminem bar for bar, on almost every song. Almost every fan is calling it a draw between the two – on some songs, Royce outshines Eminem (Fast Lane, Echo). On other songs, Em outshines Royce (Lighters, Welcome to Hell). Overall, it’s close to call. Since 2000, Em has gotten worse, and Royce has gotten better. You can’t say Royce sounds like a “passenger” just because you’re an Eminem fanboy.

    • ^ I couldn’t describe my thoughts any better.

    • Everybody is entitled to their own opinion, i agree that i should of went into more depth when talking about Royce and may of downplayed his credentials (Unintentionally) but compared Eminem, when talking about success, they’re a world apart, even you must see that. Just to add i agree with you in the respects that Eminem is getting worse, i only really ever liked one of his albums The Slim Shady LP, so i’m hardly a fanboy, i heavily disliked Recovery and Relapse.

      • Yeah but do you really think success via record sales means anything? If you use record sales as the mark of quality, MC Hammer beats Rakim, Will Smith beats Nas, Nelly beats Big Daddy Kane, etc. Then you have the Grammy’s, which regularly shits on hip hop. Any real rap fan divorces record sales & awards from the quality factor.

        And if you take a second to troll the rap message boards, you’ll see that a lot of rap fans are impressed that Em kept up with Royce!

        I didn’t mean to spaz on you too much, but it’s kinda annoying how so many Bad Meets Evil write-ups are Eminem-obsessed, when Royce has been killing it for a minute you. Give Nickel Nine his props!

        As for Em: I loved SSLP, MMLP, TES and the 8 Mile songs. I hated Encore, except for a handful of songs. I thought Relapse was tiresome, but had some good production, and amazing flows. (“Stay Wide Awake” is a masterpiece.) Recovery suffered from corny punches and too much screaming, but it was refreshing to hear Eminem making honest music over some outside production, for once.

      Realest gangsters are crack to come by and you’re one.down with ya comment.

    I disagree with a lot of the points raised in this review. I agree that Lighters does not fit with the tone of the album (Which to be honest, I found considerably more consistent than this reviewer indicates) however, I see it as not only an effective single that will undoubtedly wreak havoc on the charts as Bruno Mars himself tends to, think Bruno Mars plus the success of Love The Way You Lie, it’s a smart move. However, I think it’s a significantly better track than any of the Recovery singles. In fact, I think this is a huge step forward from Recovery.

    Flow is fresh, Em went somewhere new for him, a direction he only touched on with tracks like Almost Famous (in my opinion the strongest track on Recovery), and to compliment this beautifully, he took the only emcee that’s been able to consistently match him track-to-track. Em tends to eat whoever he raps with, think Forever, Drop the World, Renegade, EVERYTHING he does with other rappers it’s almost guaranteed that Em will devour the track– not with Royce. When I listen to this EP I see Royce and Em standing on a mountain knowing they’ve mastered the flow. The two of them are terrific together. Fast Lane says it all, these two can kill any beat, and keep up with eachother at an even keel.

    I don’t even know how you can, with sound mind or in good conscience, say that the hook of Take From Me is catchy. It’s one of the most disgustingly annoying hooks I’ve ever listened to. Meanwhile the rest are roughly in keeping with the album’s intention, which to me seemed to be, throw back to old times yet maintain the skills learned along the way. I heard a bit of Encore, a bit of Recovery (a lot, at times), a tiny bit of Relapse, and a fun amount of SSLP.

    I think Above The Law is killer, despite many people complaining that they’ve had enough of Em shouting. Loud Noises… Criticized… Really? Ortiz fucking killed it, Budden tried too hard, which is to be expected when he’s preceded by the fastest verses the member of Slaughterhouse have ever done all at once. He can’t keep up, as usual, but it’s Joe Budden, what we can commend is that he was punctual, unlike his usual lazy flow, which I think I dislike most about him. Crooked was great, fantastic flow. Royce’s verse was a bit lackluster but only because the rest of the album we saw just how hot he can get.

    I love that the beats were dark but hit hard. I’m On Everything didn’t excite me like it did everyone else ’til I plugged in my nice buds and heard the incredible force of the beat. Definitely a musical step up from Recovery (thank God) although it didn’t quite compete with the production of SSLP, but hey, what can you do, Bass Brothers had it down pat.

    I don’t know why the reviewer nitpicked the way he did, I don’t see truth in a lot of points he raised, but hey, opinions are opinions, there’s mine ahaha.

  • Am I the only one who appreciates ‘Lighters’? I admit that it doesn’t fit in with the rest of the album. In fact, the hook barely fits in with the verses. But I still like it. I think both Em and Royce spit meaningful verses and I’m sure the Bruno addition was for the radio. Nonetheless, I liked ‘Lighters’ and think it a solid addition to Em’s (and I guess Royce’s) portfolio.
    Not that big of a fan of ‘I’m on Everything’ until the second half. ‘The Reunion’ is reminiscent of Relapse, just without the accent, but still pretty hilarious.
    In regards to the rest of the album, pure gold. Their chemistry is unbelievable and as a listener, you can feel the ferocity behind each word.

    Also, did anyone else notice some of the lines rapped slightly off beat? It might’ve been on purpose, but it was still pretty weird.

  • First of all, This EP is almost classic, downloaded the leaked version and i can’t believe my ears.
    Secondly, Everyone seems to be hating on “Lighters”, Yes it does not fit the album, the song is equivalent to love the way you lie(Kinda better to me), Without love the way you lie Recovery wouldn’t sell that much and i think that’s the same reason for having a song like lighters on the Ep. Eminem wants the album to be successful, he wants to lunch Royce professional career and give him some mainstream recognitions.
    As far who performed better on the album, i personally go with a draw, Em was pretty weak on some songs but he went extremely hard on some.
    My Review !!!
    1—Welcome to hell (I go with Em)
    2—Fastlane(They both went in on this track but i prefer Royce)
    3—The Reunion(Em all the way)
    4—Above the law(Easily Em weakest performance, He was yelling too much. Royve wins here)
    5—I’m on Everything(Hmm…Em started kinda weak here and later outshines Royce towards the End…Draw to Me)
    6—A kiss(Haha..The Gaga diss, Em killed Royce here.)
    7—Lighters( I personally prefer Royce but Em was lyrically on point)
    8—Take from Me(Easily one of the best tracks on the EP, Royce made a very intro and passed the mic to Em. Draw)
    9—Loud Noises(Em’s intro was nice but easily the weakest among all five MC’s. Joell Ortiz Murdered Everyone…Royce Wins Here)
    10—Living Proof(Royce)
    11—-Echo (The best track on the EP, Hmm, Very hard to decide, This is easily Em best performance throughout the album but the dude Royce wasn’t sleeping, he was well alive…Draw)

  • Royce is Em’s best match, he outshines Em on this Ep. The Ep is great but Em fans should accept that Royce Won, Em did very good as well, His rap circled around Recovery/Slim shady Lp Eminem and a tiny bit of Encore. Great EP though. Am definitely Buying this !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And hey, “Echo” is Damn Classic ! and stop hating on “Lighters”, it’s a commercial song to boost album sales and radio airplays.

  • Hell : The Sequel for Best rap album/album of the year. Jay-z and kanye better bring watch the throne hard else…. The weakest moment on this EP is “Above the Law”, i kinda skipped Em’s verse, too much shouting but the song is perfect with Royce verse alone. Em made a good decision working with an underground MC and as well bring back some of his old underground skills……Perfect Way to launch Royce Mainstream career.
    Best tracks….My order
    1) Echo———Sick beat and flow from both MC’s. Since Dre fell off Em should start working with DJ Khalli, Dude makes sick beats. Talking to myself is my best Recovery Track
    2) Living Proof——-Sick rap battle beat with Royce killing it while Em seat on the bench.
    3) Take From me——-Chorus is Damn Catchy as hell
    4) Fast Lane——Both Mc’s went in here.
    5) Loud Noises (Tie)——This track is more of “Who got the best flow” with Joell Ortiz murdering everyone. Perfect offbeat beat as well.
    5) I’m on Everything(Tie)——Similar to Fastlane and A kiss, Both Mc’s went in, Mike epps chorus made the whole track funny.
    7) A kiss——-Really one of the highlights, Em brought back his slim shady LP ways here by attacking the Shemale singer Lady Gaga.
    8) The Reunion—–Nice story telling , Who makes song for you ladies ??
    9) Welcome to hell—–Perfect intro
    10) Lighters——–Radio Sh!t, Song for girls.
    11) Above the Law——-Easily the weakest track, Good with Royce verse only, Em ruined it.

  • where can i get the album please post a link

  • The EP’s a lot better than your review suggests, which is very poorly done btw (read: less simplification of the songs and reliance on adjectives).

    “Lighters” is in Hell for the same reason “Love the Way You Lie” was on Recovery. It’ll be the Top40 hit and act as a springboard for the EP’s popularity and chance with mainstream audiences. That doesn’t automatically mean it’s a bad song. In fact, I feel Bruno Mars carries the song quite well, with Em and Royce contributing mellow verses as opposed to the shouting in “Above the Law”, which is refreshing.

    “Take from Me”, “Living Proof”, “Echoes” and “A Kiss” are stellar tracks, trumping almost all the tracks on Recovery. I agree that everyone goes a bit too hard on “Loud Noises” but I feel those Slaughterhouse boys don’t know how to rap any other way.

    Classic EP. Wish I hadn’t listened to the leaked version after hearing “Take from Me”. Imma buy 2 copies when it comes out 6/14 just to make up for it.

  • I think em and royce were pretty even on the album. I do think Em killed it on more songs but unlike royce he also had some weak performances.

    1. Welcome 2 hell (eminem)
    2. Fast lane (Royce)
    3. Reunion (eminem)
    4. Above the law ( both dope with the lyrics but because of em’s shouting have to say royce)
    5 I’m on everything (eminem wins)
    6. A kiss (em)
    7. Lighters (unlike the reviewer I like this track, prefer eminem)
    8. Take from me (one of my fav.. em)
    9. Loud noises (Joel ortiz killed, eminem was a bit underwelming, royce was pretty dope)
    10 Living proof (royce)
    11 Echo (royce)

  • Haha..I even had to go back and listen to above the law again…I guess I don’t know what’s wrong with my ears…besides from fastlane…it’s my favorite song on the ep..got my head bopping more than any other..I’m not seeing how “weak” it is lyrically either.. I disagree on Royce being underground…I disagree with underground all together for that matter.. Sorry but the world is set up by the exposure you get..his exposure dropped when he beefed with em..he said it himself..back and so is the money.. Great is seen heard and grabbed by the masses…but being great in any sort of music just doesn’t only involve one thing..it’s lyrics..flow..voice…beats..all have to appeal to the masses.. Being underground is cool to those stuck..but throw them the money and it’s gone.. Nobody wants to work a 9-5 and rap on the side..they want the rap career and money..if not..there would be no slaughterhouse on shady records..people have been blinded by good beats cause the music industry and radio airplay is catered to women..hints why you need a rhianna or Bruno mars to get massive airplay..ask jayz and kanye..song of their collab has Bruno and beyonce…but bet they won’t get shit for it..jay been doing songs with girls for years..cause he wants money..hasn’t hurt his ability to rap..or respect he recieved from the rap / hiphop world.. And really ..you people think eminem screams..haha…I guess you’ve never been yelled at..I’ve been a fan of hardcore/grindcore music for years..you can’t understand a scream…the funniest shit I see is people hate on change of flow..to me another quality of a great rap artist..same with accents..not everyone can do that..if you can do it all..you got talent..name another rapper who can change so much..and yet still sound good doing it..still sell..still be viewed as a great… This is what I’ve been saying..don’t listen with the thought of this is how it has to sound to be good…btw if you did you wouldn’t like alot of “underground” artist….listen to it by placing yourself into the music..compare it to who’s hot in your opinion..what are they saying..and what is this saying…write down the raps if you have to…understand what your hearing…most of it’s going to fast for you to fully understand..break it all down..you’ll develop a new respect…oh and one more thing for “underground” … I don’t know about your city..but there isn’t one rap station in Baltimore that bumps eminem..they’d even cut his part from the lean back remix…..yet he still sells and appeals to the masses..quote game from their song together..he mentioned it..good shit gets noticed..and good shit creates hype and sells.. And it’s not just because everyone knows em and he was big before..everyones heard of krsone also..he’s good..but doesn’t sell..cause he’s a one trick pony..I’m just saying your underground if being good is just good enough for you..you strive to prove your good and people notice..not just the cool guys who are too good to listen to mainstream.. You don’t have to wait for everyone else you wanna be like to like it and say it’s ok..and it doesn’t have to be hard and hood..tupac was a great..and he had alot of “soft” songs.. Oh and one last..it’s ironic as hell on messaged board after message board people love take from me…yet it’s about stealing music..the only way anyone would have heard that song at this point..haha..sorry I jump around

    • I went and listened again too! It’s my favourite song too (aside from Fast lane), I love the way Em delivers and I can feel the anger. He starts off angry and you can tell and then SUDDENLY at 1:20 he goes crazy and holy f*** I just go crazy with him.

    this ep will be hard to top i dont think there can be anything that can top this …maybe the slaughterhouse album if it does drop later on this year!!!!

  • Dont agree with this review this is a great effort by Royce n Em. i dont even see Jay -Z and Kanye beatin’ this…..imo crooked I easily had the best verse on “Loud Noises” and by quite a distance………. .

  • Realest gangsters are crack to come by and you’ve set the records straight on all thin’s unclear.down with ya comment.

  • ok so….. i expected alot more. 1) this just felt like a bunch of random songs thrown on one album with no common theme… 2) it lacked the darkness i was expecting……. 3) bruno mars? lighters is a decent song but it shouldnt be on an album called Bad Meets Evil ! 4) Em and Royce shoulda listened to the song they made “Bad Meets Evil” and built the album around them……. “tweeenty years ago… 2 outlaws took this whole town over / Sheriffs couldn’t stop ‘em” lolll remember that?? 5) Eminem is stuck on that fast flow… it kills.. but every song cant be like that… its a fast flow that just rhymes wenever he wants… i want him to go back to the basics.. slow it down… (no homo) 6) the album needed more sound effects.. it shoulda felt like a movie !! ok thats it…

  • Review is alright. I don’t think it’s right you mouthing off the hooks though, they contrast well imho.

    Above the law is FANTASTIC. The hook is fantastic, great female vocals and real talk. FROM THE FIRST LINE “terrible but not grippable” haha and the way you think you’re at the end of the first verse and Em just FIRESSSS and goes crazy.

    I agree with the lighters comment though, I don’t get why Bruno Mars was on it. Don’t get me wrong, I love the song, but why is he even collabing with Shady lol

  • I do agree you could tell the reviewer was a little biased in favor of Eminem. He is crazy if Royce was in any way overshadowed by Eminem. They both were absolutely sick. There are some songs that I simply dont like. Lighters is definitely one of them and not because of its out-of-place stance in the album. It simply isn’t a great song and they could have done much with Bruno. “Reunion”, “Loud Noises”, “Lighters”, and “Above the Law” did not do it for me. My favs are “Take From Me” (Masterpeice and best song on the album) “Fast Lane” (Nice and even performance from Em & Royce) “I’m On Everything” (Sick beat) “Welcome 2 Hell” (My ears orgasmed when I heard this) and “A Kiss” (Oh Lady Gaga don’t feel bad). Great album and I hope Royce gets some recognition because of this. And does anybody know when the “Space Bound” music video is coming. It’s been like forever.

  • You guys are ridiculous. “Em killed Royce” or “Royce killed Em”… In case you didn’t notice, they didn’t diss each other but made a full EP TOGETHER.

  • The critic is an idiot who wrote this.

    Firstly, in the current climate who has released such a lyrical album that is a potential classic. Everyone is trying to do the whole ringtone rap or let me make a hot record so I can get paid bull-ish.
    This was a great album, showing their lyrical ability once again. Royce and Eminem held their own and it showed they are both excellent. Moreover, Eminem showed he can drop a chart topping album like Recovery but still excel in what he loves most, his lyrics which shows his versatility.
    Royce was just fantastic as usual and he really showed his abilities again!

    I think this will be the album of the year, has much more to it than a commercial album with tracks that are just floor fillers or cd fillers.

    • Sorry but the lyrical content on this EP was not that spectacular, it was good at times, cliche at others. I found i was more submerged lyrically by Tyler, The Creators album Goblin and that’s saying something, but it’s just a personal opinion, Everybody is entitled to their own.

      • hahaha so you’ve jumped on the Odd Future bandwagon? Well, I’ve got news for ya: The Odd Future kids have a ton of potential, but they have yet to make an album to back it up. Where’s their 36 Chambers? It’s still to come.

        Yeah, Goblin has a couple great songs (Yonkers, She), but it also has a lot of plodding dumbness. One whole song is “bitch suck dick like she sucks dick.” You’re more submerged lyrically in lines that? Give me a break. The Gravediggaz did shock value better, more than a decade ago.

        Not to shit on Odd Future too much – I do like what they’re doing. I’m just saying, they’re not without their flaws, and I find it so many critics are bending over backwards to praise them. It reminds me of the last South Park episode, where Randy pretends like he likes Tween Wave.

        • Also the Bad Meets Evil EP is LIGHT YEARS ahead of anything on Goblin. Royce’s bars especially. They all just flew over your head. And it’s sad, really.

    This album is fantastic.

  • I happen to agree with the writer of this review. I’m On Everything is a stunning track, and the EP has its moments, but overall there is too much of the overly produced Recovery-type crap here.

    You guys think there are no great lyricists in hip-hop anymore? Go listen to the new Saigon album. It pisses all over this thing.

  • EP is good, not a classic but likely to be. The album is more of flow and rhymes then lyrics.. Songs like loud noises was all about who got the best flow. The lyrical songs here are lighters, take from me, reunion, living proof and echo. The Ep is up there with tech n9ne all 6′s and 7′s as the best hip hop albums of 2011 so far !!!!

  • What can i say other than “bad review”. Firstly its not an album, its an ep which is basically a collection of studio songs that arnt connected, therefore, this album should be reviewed for what it is, an ep, and ive gotta say , its one of the best rap eps of all time. People that are comparing it to the marshall mathers lp need to get the heads checked but i get why they make comparrisons, eminem is attempting to go back to his old style on this album and it shoes most on track the Reunion, the last verse where he says “2 feet of lights, flashed out we hit some black ice, spun out forgot we had a trailer hitched to the back, we jack knifed”, he actually sounds like the old eminem when he spits that line, that line is the most ive seen of slim shady since 2002. As for Royce not holding his own, youve gotta be kidding me, im half tempted to say that royce is better than eminem on this ep lol, thats how much he does hold his own, however ive come to the conclusion that both rappers are equally as good on the ep. Overal unlike most of ems work, this cd isnt just for em fans but for fans of hip hop, the beats arnt typical quirky eminem sounds, there more simple and universal to rap, every track could be looked upon as a club banger beat wise yet the lyrics are far from simple, so complex that i dislike using the term club banger in regards to any track on this ep, but put simply, all i can say is if you do buy this album, youll hear an evolved eminem and royce da 59, its the kind of ep that if you didnt like eminem before hearing it, youll change your mind by the time the cds finished, it really is classic no nonsense rap back at its finest

  • I agree Royce came hard with this CD. I don’t understand why some people including this reviewer don’t like Royce. I’ve always loved the shit they do together. However, I do see a great deal of similarity between this and Recovery but it’s and EP so what is expected, I also don’t see it as that dark of an album, except for Echo, and maybe Above the Law. I’m looking forward to Watch the Throne, but I don’t think there is anyway that they can come with more lyrics than this album. Hopefully they come with more dark. Tyler the Creator is definitely where to go for darkness. I think Shady 2.0 is taking over for 2011 kind of like 03 when 50 and Obie came out with albums and soon after Em dropped The Eminem Show, which I think was his best album with almost no songs that weren’t fire. But I def think last years “Not Afraid” was his best single ever.

    • I don’t “hate” Royce…

    Do you wanna know what really fucks me off?

    They both have INSANE bars on Lighters but Bruno ruins it.

    AND HOLY FUCK ABOVE THE LAW IS HARDEST TRACK ON THAT EP. Both of them go in so fucking hard.

    Gonna order my tracks in terms of favourite:

    1) Above the law ++ Because of Eminem getting furious and Royce getting furious I was like woah, bars are strong).

    2) Fastlane ++ Racked up 400+ plays on this since it first dropped and I just remember the feeling when I suddenly clicked that the old Shady was back. They both went hard on this.

    3) Take From Me ++ Love the female vocals and I love Royce on this. I love the way Eminem comes in with this. “Just to give it away to people who don’t even appreciate flows mother fucka”, I love that bar.

    4) I’m on Everything ++ I fucking love this but I don’t like the chorus that much, Royce goes in so so hard on the first verse and I love the bridge to Em’s verse and how he goes straight into a sick flow and then speeds up hahahahaha holy fuck the instrumental is sick as fuck.

    5) Welcome 2 Hell ++ I really like the back and fourth style rather than separate verses separated by chorus, The bars are hard as hell too. The part where they’re like “the 5’9 and the I’m marshall we” is my fav part right near the end

    6) A kiss ++ Royce starts off hard, Shady is too chilled on this but the lyrics put this as one of my top, cmooon “Tell Lady GaGa she can quit her job at the post office, she’s still a male lady” best bar on EP surely.

    7) Loud Noises ++ Haa I actually love this too I dunno how it ended up at 7. Nothing special about it I guess but I love Em’s flow and Royce’s delivery I love too

    8) The Reunion ++ I love this too, I love his story telling songs but as with the one above, it’s ended down my list wtf.

    9) Lighters ++ This song gets me mad, Eminem’s bars are fantastic and so are Royce’s but WTF is Bruno mars doing on HELL : The Sequel. His voice is way too soft and you’re listening to a dark rap EP then suddenly you here a soft voice, Em’s verse makes up for it and I like the way he takes the drop but holy fuck it sounds mainstream, at least the lyrics are good. Naww I don’t mind this song but I just get angry that it was on this dark EP.

    Above the law holy fuck I love how he drops in!

    TEARABLE BUT NOT GRIPPABLE HAHAHAHAHAH FUCKING HELL

    Right I can’t stop talking about this song. He’s going in hard with insane lyrics then he’s going at a good speed and at 0:59 he goes the fuck in like mad then I’m like woahhh this is fucking hard I fucking love these bars and flow then it gets to 1:20 and he just gets angrier and I’m like DAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH THIS IS TOOO MUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The vocals are so so good too. Even after my 150+th listen I still wonder if Royce will match up to it in his verse and he goes hard in the first part like Em did then at 2:44 he does EXACTLY as Em does and he gets angrier! THAT’S THE HELL PART OF THIS ALBUM THE BAD AND EVIL. Listen to it carefully, he’s chilled “they ask me for a hook I tell em left and right and a cut” THEN SUDDENLY HE GETS MAD “WHAT U ALL MESSING WITH, A NIGGA THAT’LL LEAVE YOU FUBAR, FUCKED UP BEYONG ALL RECOGNITION”

    DAJHHHHH I CANT HANDLE THIS EP ITS TOO MUCH!

  • i just think the people who dnt like this ep have too many bars going over their heads…. i dnt blame them but this is heat……….cause they be servin this shit……….

  • This might be a shocker… but in my opinion Lighters is one of the best tracks on the EP, it is lyrically amazing and lets be honest Bruno Mars’s chorus really isn’t that bad. And you know this track is gonna make BANK with Eminem AND Bruno Mars on it and dont get me wrong Royce is amazing just not well known, mainstream wise.

  • A f***ing decent EP in my opinion. I agree with what Cameron said about too much of Recovery Eminem being on this EP but to be honest I liked most of Recovery. He does overdo the screaming thing a bit much like he killed the accent but it’s a phase just like the accent was and he’ll get over it soon. There are some genius hooks on this EP like on The Reunion (damn Em was catchy with that) and I’m On Everything but the best hook goes to ECHO, goddamn that girl could sing. And Em’s verse on Echo was arguably the best on the album, its between that verse, Royce’s verse on Fast Lane and Royce’s verse on Above The Law. Em and Royce compliment each other extremely well, because both have crazy bars for days and their delivery/flow is untouchable. As good as this EP was there were some problems with it. Some of the hooks were very poorly done: A Kiss, Lighters (well done hook but still terribly generic and that made it awful), Take From Me and Living Proof (I hope that’s not autotune I heard on Royce’s voice). Sometimes it felt like their punchlines were forced and corny. Lyricism is great but you have to be careful not to force it. Also the other problem i had was Writer’s Block not being on this. That song was amazing. Royce KILLED IT. Em had a nice hook. I don’t understand why that one wasn’t on the album instead of Living Proof. The first half or so of the EP is great but then they take a turn downhill on A Kiss. I mean A Kiss was solid but it seemed kind of pointless, after that all the tracks are good yet tragically flawed in their own ways. Up until Echo, which is still as freaking amazing as it was the day I first heard it. Royce delivers a mean verse, Em delivers a classic one. The chorus is epic. The beat is well bloody done.

    Overall, 8.5/10. Would’ve been a 9 if Writer’s Block was on it. For those of you who think it deserves less, I think the good outweighs the bad on this EP. I mean there were some problems but it’s great to have Bad and Evil back together again. When they wanna be, they are probably the sickest duo since Eric B and Rakim. No one else comes to my mind immediately. I’m really happy for Royce too. He’s finally getting the attention he deserves. I hope he doesn’t screw it up. He’s earned his way in this game that’s for damn sure. As for Em, I hope he takes his time, gathers his efforts and delivers another classic album in due time. I think he’s got one or two more in him. I can’t imagine the Rap game without Eminem.

    • Stop hating on “Lighters”, it’s definitely a #1 hit.

      • The verses are sick, but I agree with everyone that the Bruno Mars hook is lame as fuck. The song is manufactured to be a “#1 hit”.

        Which brings me to my next point — if it’s a hit, does that mean it’s good? Kesha has made a few hits but she’s untalented as fuck.

        tl;dr: Bruno Mars ruined the track (and the vibe of the whole album) for anyone who doesn’t have a vagina and isn’t under the age of 16.

    Don’t understand this review to be honest, I think the song that is most like the old Slim Shady is The Reunion, lines such as “She kept asking me to quit caller her cunt, I said I CUN’T” Is genius. Royce keeps up with Eminem on every track and in no way does it seem like Eminem is carrying the EP. And I don’t get how it’s a mix of Eminem early material and mainstream pop, there’s one mainstream pop song on an 11 track EP, so it’s not a mix it’s an exception.

  • when I put the cd on, this is what turn to most:

    1. Above the law
    2. Echo
    3.I’m on everything, fast lane, and lighters
    4.Living proof
    5. Welcome to he’ll, Take from me, Reunion, and a kill. (still great)

    And then loud noises :/

    Overall this ep is amazing. 9/10

  • Some reviewers should lose their fucking right to review Albums and post it over the Internet, YOU included. First of all Lighters is more of a personal heartfelt song, it did NOT ruin the Album, yes it wasn’t ‘dark’ but then it didn’t need to be.

    I love EVERY single track of this EP. Lighters may be different to the horrorcore/hardcore themed Album but it brought the Album out in a conscious way. How can you refer to the song ‘Fast Lane’ when it is a track 2 and Lighters is all the way at Track 9? You obviously didn’t listen it in order, which is a better way to review an Album because you can get better judgement. Even if you DID do that why would you compare Lighters to Fast Lane? Is it cause it is a single.

    There is NOTHING wrong with Loud Noises. So what it says “Slaughterhouse” after every verse so you claim it as weak? What you should be talking about in that song is the brilliant lyricism between Eminem, Royce 5′ Da 9, Joell Ortiz, Crooked I and Joe Budden. You can’t even evaluate on that, but you critic having Slaughterhouse repeated after each verse? Subconsciously the point of that track was to get in your THICK brain that he signed Slaughterhouse. That wasn’t big on a chorus as you probably realised it should reviewed for lyrics in one word was fantastic.

    You say that occasionally Eminem ‘carries’ the Album but not on the track Living Proof with is on the deluxe addition of the Album. Nevertheless deluxe or not they BOTH contributed to the Album. You obviously do not know much about Royce to even have a better judgement. I’m sorry your review is terrible and I KNOW everyone is entitled to their opinion lets not hope your shit interview gets taken into consideration by Metacritic, Rotten Tomatoes or any other site. Having said that it probably will.

    I don’t how you can make a prediction that this Album will ‘divide’ Fans apart. Personally from what I heard from Youtube and other people who listened to this Album they have enjoyed this Album saying ‘Shady is Back’. If anything People are saying it’s Eminem comeback.

    • I didn’t know i was conducting an “interview”?…

    There are a lot of Eminem stans in here that are listening to the name rather than the song. If you listen to the EP with zero bias then you will see that it is not a “classic”. It is flawed and needs some trimming and fine tuning. The praise are form fans that can’t seem to understand that Eminem is never going to be as good as he once was. The record is OK but nothing to write home about.

  • The Reunion is best by far… the production is a mess… it feels really inconsistent… but they spent little time on this…. no tracks were cut… usually he records tons of excess tracks…

  • Well, to the author of this article – you said it seems like Eminem is carrying this album, and Royce is just a passenger. Look, Royce is a very talented rapper, he just hasn’t blown up the way Eminem has. So when a very unknown artist collabs with someone like Eminem.. of course everyone is going to overlook the underdog.
    And actually, I’m on everything is one of my favorite tracks on the album. If only you knew the history of Eminem & Royce making songs together, maybe you’d like it. The only song you reference is Bad Meets Evil from The Slim Shady LP. How about you look up every song they’ve made together, maybe then you can appreciate I’m On Everything, and this entire album. They’ve been making music like this forever. To me, the album is a blast from the past.
    The song Lighters.. look dude, you can hate on the song as much as you want, but it’s a great song. Yes, it’s a little misplaced in this CD, but it is a great song. It may be a little softer than every other song, but it’s arguably one of the better songs on the album.

  • As an artist myself I personally found it very hard to find a track where Eminem wasn’t out shined. Royce had the clarity, delivery, and overall quality IMO. I found myself being annoyed with Em most of the time – as I’ve been with most of his songs since his return.

    The review is pretty bias toward eminem IMO and maybe Royce isn’t your cup of tea.. but actually ‘listening’ to what is said instead of catering to a sound – it’s clear who is the superior of the two here. I looked up reviews after reading, on virtually every hip/hop forum that Eminem was outshined. After getting a copy of the album, I agree 100%.

    Appreciate the review though – Take From Me is the best track on the EP IMO.

  • What a shit review. Cant believe i wasted my time on this shit. Bitch u need to listen to bad meets evil,not welcome to hell. Hope u dig asshole!

  • I love royces verse in echo but I do not think he outshined ems for real

  • I admit that I’m a huge Eminem fan. I know more about him in general than I do about Royce, but that being said I think shady still outshined Royce on this EP.

    “Terrible but not Rippable” YES RIPPABLE NOT GRIPPABLE Makes sense when you think about it considering that “rip and “tear” are Synonyms. Has to be one of the dopest opening lines I’ve ever heard

    I like Royce better than Em in Echo and I’m on everything, but thats just about it.

    “She kept asking me to quit calling her cunt”
    “I said I cunt”

    pure genius right there
    His flow was dope as fuck on take from me as well.

    Fast lane in my opinion is also one of the most underrated Em verses on the album.

    “Shawty when you dance you got me captivated just by the way that you keep lickin them lips like them dicks i’m agitated aggravated to the point you don’t suck my dick or you gunna get decapitated otherwords you don’t fuckin give me head then imma have to take it”

    The wordplay and rhymes as well as the flow are unreal in that stanza.

    I could go on and on and list line after line but the point I’m trying to make is that Shady’s still got it

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