Album Review | Eminem – Recovery

This album was released on June 18th in 2010. I remember this era well. I fucking hated it. I’ve never listened to this album, but I could not stand the singles from this thing, so I think I’m gonna hate it. I’m feeling sick just by looking at the track listing. At least the production credits aren’t too bad. The album was made in response to the understandably negative reception of Relapse, in the same way Kamikaze was made after Revival. I’ve heard the first three singles from this album, and I don’t like them at all. I may have heard the fourth single, but I don’t actually remember it at all. Anyway, I don’t think I’m gonna like this album, but I’m sure it won’t be as bad as Relapse. I guess anything’s possible though…

The album begins with Cold Wind Blows. As soon as this shit started I was in pain. I literally listened to one second of the first song and had to turn it off. I’m not even joking right now. I listened to the first second and cringed so fucking hard that I had to turn it off. What the motherfuck is that singing? Why does he do that? It’s so bad. Thankfully, I think Em’s voice is far less annoying here than it was on Relapse. I like his flow a lot too, but these lyrics are not good.

Motherfucker, might as well let my lips pucker
Like Elton John ’cause I’m just a mean cocksucker

I guess the first verse is okay even though I don’t care for the writing. The hook is fucking terrible though. Why does he sing??? WHY? It’s so bad, man. The production from Just Blaze is alright. He sounds good on the second verse, but these lyrics are so corny.

Stick my dick in a circle, but I’m not fuckin’ around

It’s kinda creative how he had himself getting punished by God as he rapped, but the pitch shifted lines sounded really corny to me. That hook is fucking unbearable too. This shit sounds like fucking Korn. The final verse was actually pretty cool to be fair. He said some slick shit there.

I swear, you try to diss me, I’ll slaughter you
I put that on everything, like everyone does with autotune
The last thing you want to do is have me spit out a rhyme
And say, “I was writing this and I thought of you”

The song is bad to me overall though. He has a nice flow and I like the final verse, but the singing on the hook and intro are unbearable. I’m honestly not crazy about the beat either. This shit is wack. It’s followed by Talkin’ 2 Myself, which is better in my opinion. I still don’t like it though lol. I really cannot stand that sung hook from Kobe. It’s just not the kinda shit I wanna hear. I get zero enjoyment out of these Pop & R&B collaborations that Em always does for whatever reason. The hook is unbearable. I don’t really care for the beat at all either, which is disappointing because I’m typically a big fan of DJ Khalil‘s work. Thankfully, the rapping from Eminem is actually pretty goddamn good on this song. The content is far more serious than that of the preceding couple albums. It’s interesting to hear about how he was jealous of Kanye & Wayne for actually making good music, and he almost dissed them.

Anyone who was buzzin’ back then could’ve got it
Almost went at Kanye too
God, it feels like I’m goin’ psychotic, thank God that I didn’t do it
I’d’ve had my ass handed to me, and I knew it

It’s also nice to hear him acknowledge that his rapping was trash. It just sucks that he’s still not making good music here lol.

I’m in the booth, poppin’ another pill, tryna talk myself into it
Are you stupid? You’re gon’ start dissin’ people for no reason?
‘Specially when you can’t even write a decent punchline even?
You’re lyin’ to yourself, you’re slowly dyin’
You’re denyin’ your health is declinin’ with your self-esteem
You’re cryin’ out for help

The second verse is dope. I think the actual rapping here is good, but literally everything else about the song ruins it for me. The hook is terrible, and I don’t care for the beat at all. The final verse is great though.

It’s different, them last two albums didn’t count
Encore, I was on drugs; Relapse, I was flushin’ ’em out
I’ve come to make it up to you now, no more fuckin’ around
I got somethin’ to prove to fans ’cause I feel like I let ’em down

This is kinda sad because this album isn’t good either. The rapping’s too good for me to call this a bad song, but it’s certainly not enjoyable. This is just very mediocre. It’s followed by one of the few songs on this album that I actually like, On Fire. The beat from Mr. Porter is pretty goddamn nice, and I like Em’s delivery on this track much more than that of the preceding one. He’s not yelling like he was on the two opening tracks. This shit is actually dope. The first verse is great, even though it does slip into lyrical miracle territory at certain points.

Wrap a lizard in gauze
Beat you in the jaws with it, grab the scissors and saws
And cut out your livers, gizzards, and balls
Throw you in the middle of the ocean in a blizzard with Jaws

I don’t even mind the hook on this track; I actually think it’s pretty cool. The second verse is really dope too.

I just put a bullshit hook in between two long ass verses
If you mistook this for a song, look, this ain’t a song
It’s a warning to Brooke Hogan and David Cook
That the crook just took over, so book

The poop line was kinda rough, but I’ll allow it. This is actually a very good song. I really fuck with this one. It’s dope. Unfortunately, it’s followed by my least favorite song on the whole album, Won’t Back DownWhy the fuck is he doing songs with Pink??? Why does he do this? The hook is trash. The beat is grating as hell too. This might actually be the worst beat I’ve ever heard from DJ Khalil. I’m not feelin’ the first verse; it’s loaded with a shit ton of corny puns.

These other cats ain’t metaphorically where I’m at, man
I gave Bruce Wayne a Valium
And said, “Settle your fuckin’ ass down!
I’m ready for combat, man!”
Get it? ‘Calm Batman!’

I really cannot stand this track. The hook and beat are terrible, and the second verse is somehow even worse than the first one.

Girl, shake that ass like a donkey with Parkinson’s
Make like Michael J. Fox is in your drawers
Playin’ with an etch-a-sketch

I despise nearly every single aspect of this track. This shit is really difficult to listen to.

Think you spit the rawest?
I’m an uncooked slab of beef layin’ on your kitchen floor
Other words, I’m off the meat rack

The third verse isn’t as bad as the second one, but it’s still got some really corny lines.

Poison Ivy wouldn’t have me thinkin’ rash
So hit the dance-floor, cutie, while I do my duty
On this microphone; shake your booty, shorty!
I’m the shit; why you think Proof used to call me “Doody?”

I think this song is fucking horrible. It’s wack af, and easily the worst track on the record in my opinion. The next song is called W.hite T.rash P.arty. I’m not really a fan of the beat from Supa Dups at all. It sounds like a bad Swizz Beatz instrumental. It’s basically a shitty bling era beat. The singing on the intro is really bad too. I guess the first verse isn’t terrible, but I’m just not interested in the content at all. This sung hook is so bad. Honestly, it would probably be decent if the hook wasn’t so bad and the production was better. His flow and delivery are cool, and he’s rhyming well, but I don’t like the song overall. It’s wack to me. The next track is called Going Through Changes, and it’s a pretty frustrating song for me. The fucking Ozzy Osbourne sample is absolutely horrific. I cannot stand that shit. Thankfully, the actual production from Emile Haynie is really good. I can definitely appreciate the introspective lyricism from Em too. I like the verses a lot, but the fucking hook absolutely ruins this track for me. The second verse is great though.

I lock myself in the bedroom, bathroom, nappin’ at noon
“Yeah, Dad’s in a bad mood, he’s always snappin’ at you”
“Marshall, what happened that you can’t stop with these pills
And you’ve fallen off with your skills and your own fans are laughin’ at you?”

As far as Em’s more emotional material, I think this is some of his best writing up to this point in his career. It’s just tragic that he wastes these great verses on otherwise wack songs. Each verse is better than the one it follows here though. The third verse is fantastic. The final verse was pretty amazing too. I really wish I liked this song more, but the fucking Ozzy sample makes it completely unenjoyable for me. It’s definitely not a bad song though. It’s just okay to me. It’s followed by Not Afraid, which was a huge single from this album.

It’s fucking terrible. The hook is so fucking lame. This shit is corny as hell.

So fuck the world, feed it beans
It’s gassed up if it thinks it’s stoppin’ me

I think the first verse is decent I guess. The production is just way too dramatic. The hook is so fucking bad too, man. Em references a common criticism of Relapse, which is that he used too many accents, but I still have no idea what that’s all about. I thought his actual voice was annoying as shit on that album, but I literally didn’t hear him rap in an accent at all. Anyway, the final verse on this track is actually pretty goddamn great. If these verses were placed over a better beat and the horrific hook and god awful bridge were taken out, I might have liked it. This song is terrible as it is though. I can’t stand this shit. The next song is called Seduction. The uncredited vocals from Sly Jordan are really bad. I don’t think the beat from Boi-1da is bad, but it’s not really the kinda thing I wanna hear Em over. It’s way too dramatic. Contrary to what the title implies, this is probably the least sexy song I’ve ever heard. The first verse is fine I suppose. The hook is so fucking bad though. Goddamn man, these hooks… They really fucked this whole album up. Anyway, this track is all about how he seduces women by rapping well. Why is he yelling every line? I don’t really like anything about this song honestly. I guess the beat is okay. This is just not for me at all though. I didn’t enjoy this even a little bit. It’s definitely more tolerable to me than the preceding track, but it’s still wack in my opinion. I think it’s terrible. It’s followed by another huge single called No Love.

It seems to be most people’s favorite song from this album, but I don’t like it at all. The What Is Love? sample is corny as fuck to me, and I cannot stand the sung hook from Eminem. However, I wouldn’t call this a bad song because I think both of the verses are actually very good. Even Lil Wayne spit one of his better verses of the decade on this song. The “semi-cartermatic” line was lame as hell, but overall the verse was great, even if his flow wasn’t that impressive. The singing on the hook is really bad to me, and I hate the shitty synths that come in during that part. I’d probably like this song more if it wasn’t so goddamn dramatic. Eminem killed his verse though. Much like many of the other tracks, I like the actual rapping, but dislike the hook and production. I think it’s decent overall, but I’m never listening to it again. The next track is yet another single called Space Bound.

It’s the only single that I didn’t remember at all before listening to the full album. I was actually enjoying it quite a bit until the sung hook from Steve McEwan came in. I think the beat from Jim Jonsin is pretty cool, and the first verse from Em is dope. That hook sucks ass though. I like the second verse as well. I think when Em is actually trying to take things seriously he can do it relatively well. This hook is horrible though. The content is clearly about an abusive relationship. I interpreted it as his relationship with drugs. Thinking about it figuratively makes it a much more enjoyable track for me. I wish I liked this shit more, but the fucking hook really ruins it for me. That could be said about a lot of the songs on this album though. This track is decent overall I guess. The next song is called Cinderella Man. The beat from Script Shepherd is terrible. I don’t know who the fuck that is. This is a bad first impression though. The first verse is thankfully pretty goddamn dope. The hook is really bad to me, but I think it’s a little better than his previous hook on this album. If someone could just take the verses from this album and put them over better beats and take away the shitty hooks they might be able to make some pretty nice remixes. The second verse is pretty solid, although it does have some really terrible dad joke bars.

My filet is smokin’ weed; yeah, fa██ot, the steaks are high

He thankfully ended the verse really strongly though. Overall, I think this track is pretty mediocre. The verses are literally the only aspect of the song I like even a little bit. The next track is 25 to Life. The singing on the hook from Liz Rodrigues technically isn’t that bad, but it’s also not particularly enjoyable for me. Again, this shit is just way too dramatic. I feel like this is the Hip Hop equivalent of an Imagine Dragons album. I guess the first verse is alright. He’s rapping about another bad relationship; I don’t know why he went in this direction for so many of these songs. It’s not as easy to interpret this as a song about addiction in my opinion, but I suppose it’s possible. This is just so far from the kind of music I enjoy. This is way too poppy & dramatic. I don’t like the hook at all, and I’m not really into this beat either. I guess the verses are solid, but this just isn’t for me. It’s mediocre in my opinion, and that’s me being lenient. The following track is called So Bad, and it’s… So bad.

cool guy

Just kidding, it’s not actually that bad. I don’t really like it that much though. This beat from Dr. Dre & Nick Brongers is okay I guess, and I actually like the first verse on this song to be honest. It’s not amazing or anything, but I enjoyed it. The sung hook thankfully doesn’t sound too bad. Honestly, this is probably his best singing on the whole album. The second verse was pretty solid too. I just don’t really care for the content of this song. The final verse was okay. This isn’t my favorite track on the album, but it’s far more tolerable than almost every other track. I don’t really think anything about this song is bad, but at the same time nothing about it is good enough for me to return to it. It’s an okay track; it just lacks replay value for me. It’s followed by Almost Famous. It sounds like a fucking Flyleaf song with Eminem. I cannot stand that hook. The first verse fucking sucks too.

Get your brains blown out, that’s what I call blowin’ your mind
When I come back like nut on your spine
I’m a thumb tack that you slept on, son
Now here I come, screaming “Attack!” like I just stepped on one

At least the beat isn’t that bad. I don’t think it’s particularly good, but it’s tolerable I guess. Man… The fucking hooks all over this album are fucking horrible. The second verse was pretty goddamn dope though honestly. The final verse was cool too. I’m wondering if this song inspired Big Sean’s abysmal Finally Famous album. Anyway, this isn’t the worst track on the album, but that’s not saying much because I still think it’s wack. At this point in the project, I was really running out of steam. This album actually took me like two days just to listen all the way through one time. It’s so fucking tedious. Anyway, the next track is possibly the most famous song from the whole album: Love the Way You Lie.

I cannot fucking stand this song. This is some of the most melodramatic, overtly poppy, commercialized bullshit Eminem has ever done. I hate the hook from Rihanna, and I can’t stand the production either. I think Eminem’s rapping is cool for the most part. He did what he was trying to do well in my opinion; I just don’t actually like what he was trying to do. The closing couplet of the second verse is horrible though.

Now you get to watch her leave out the window
Guess that’s why they call it window pane!!!!!!!!

I appreciate what they were going for, but the style in which this song is made is so far from the kinda shit I would ever enjoy that I can’t get into it at all. It’s terrible to me. The penultimate song on the album is called You’re Never Over, and it’s yet another super frustrating track for me. Eminem’s singing on the hook is fucking God awful. However, I actually kinda like the shitty Electronic-influenced production on this song. The first verse is genuinely fantastic; his flow is stellar, and the writing isn’t bad at all. This is so fucking frustrating because this would probably be my favorite song on the album if the hook wasn’t so horrible. His singing on the bridge isn’t even bad, which just adds insult to injury. The second verse was actually beautiful, even despite the ketchup & mustard line. This is so fucking frustrating, man. I love the rapping on this song, and I even like the beat. The hook really ruined this shit for me. I could never call this song bad, but I’m not gonna be listening to it again. It’s just okay to me. The closing song is technically an untitled hidden track. I just pretend it’s the title track. I think the beat from Havoc is actually pretty dope. It’s definitely my favorite beat on the album. The first verse is pretty nice aside from the racist quatrain about “esk██os” at the end. The hook isn’t bad at all—mainly because it’s super short. The second verse has some terrible lines in it, but his flow is really nice, and he sounds great.

Me, I’m always shittin’ diarrhea of the mouth
‘Til your speakers crap out; pfft, huh, what?
Girl, you got a hot butt
Like a lit cigarette

I really can’t believe he says shit like this and doesn’t understand why people clown him. The third verse has some really shitty lines it too.

I don’t get it, man, is there a void?
All this weak shit, what am I, steroids?
Well, bitch, I’m back with some shit for that ass
And your trunk, elephant hemorrhoids

His flow and delivery make the verse enjoyable for me despite these terrible lines. The song is still dope to me. I like it a lot. It’s dope. Thank God he at least ended the album off on a strong note.

This album is kinda bad, but it’s definitely a step up from Relapse. You can tell that this project is really important to Em just by listening to it, so it’s sad that I didn’t end up liking it at all. I think it’s bad for different reasons than Relapse though. I think Em’s rapping is actually the best aspect of this project. What makes it so bad is… Well… Everything else. These beats are just not very good, and the fucking features, man… Don’t even get me started on those features. This album is starving for good hooks. It’s almost completely deprived of listenable choruses. This really just feels like a Pop Rock album that just so happens to have some white guy yelling bars throughout it. I’ve told a few people this already, but I genuinely think that this might actually be the whitest album I’ve ever heard. It’s possible that I’m just basing this off of recency bias, but I can’t think of anything else. Mind you, I’ve never actually listened to a Macklemore or MGK album. I have heard one Yelawolf album though. Love Story was pretty goddamn white. Whatever. It doesn’t matter. I don’t like using “white” as an adjective this way, but I don’t know what else to say. This is just super commercialized Pop Rap that I feel like white soccer moms would bump in their minivans. I don’t like it. I only enjoyed two songs, the same way I only liked two songs from Relapse. The difference is that Relapse had more extreme highs and lows. This one’s more consistent in my opinion. They’re both incredibly hard to listen to though. This shit was a task. I think it’s wack.

Favorite Song: Untitled
Least Favorite Song: Won’t Back Down


D Flat
Grade: D



  2. Up next, The Marshall Mathers LP 2. Eminem’s most polarizing album by far. I’m interested to see what you think of it.

    Also, do you even need to review Revival? The universe already knows it’s garbage, but I suppose you could review it just to give it another nail in the coffin.

  3. As a white guy who likes a lot of pop music as well as hip hop, this album sucks and is too white. The hooks were so bad. Eminem, stop fucking singing!
    If you review Shady 15, there’s a song there where Eminem only sings and doesn’t rap, Yellawolf is the only rapped verse on the track. It’s painfull to listen to, although the album does have some good songs on there.

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