Today has been a world wind day in hip-hop as Eminem unleashed a lyrical hit list on his surprise release, Kamikaze.
Arriving in fans ears Friday (Aug. 31), the rapper toyed with satire by “coming for” top media personalities and artists who critiqued his previous album, Revival. He also took the time to share his thoughts on the current state of rap between his quick boastful raps.
Those on the hit list included younger students of rap like Lil Pump, Lil Xan and Lil Yachty as well as faves like Vince Staples and Tyler, The Creator. Some of his disses weren’t’ surprising (Joe Budden, Charlamagne tha God) but others did (Iggy Azalea, Dr. Dre, MGK).
Take a look at the list of targets, his history with them and the blistering lines below.
Line: “Lil Pump, Lil Xan imitate Lil Wayne I should aim at everybody in the game/ pick a name” (“The Ringer”)
Why: Em appears to be over the influx of “lil” rappers who’ve dominated the charts in recent years. While he continues to cape for favorites like J.Cole, Big Sean, Drake and Kendrick, the rapper draws lines in the sands when it comes to mumble rappers.
Line: “I can see why people like Lil Yachty, but not me though Not even dissin’, it just ain’t for me/All I am simply is just an MC/Maybe, “Stan” just isn’t your cup of tea/Maybe, your cup’s full of syrup and lean” (“The Ringer”)
Why: While Em isn’t making a direct diss to Lil Boat, he isn’t fond of drug raps Yachty doesn’t push these messages per say, but it looks like Em is just over it all.
Line: See No. 1
Line: “But next time you don’t gotta use Tech N9ne If you wanna come at me with a sub-machine gun/And I’m talkin’ to you, but you already know who the f**k you are, Kelly/I don’t use sublims’ and sure as f**k don’t sneak-diss/But keep commentin’ on my daughter Hailie” (“No Alike”)
Why: This dig is personal. It’s been over three years since MGK made a subtle comment about his then 16-year-old daughter on Twitter, but it hasn’t left the rapper’s memory.
Line: “I’d just be like everyone else in the fucking industry Especially an effing Recovery clone of me/So finger-bang, chicken wang, MGK, Iggy ‘zae”
Why: We don’t see why these two would have an issue so let’s chop it up to wordplay, shall we?
Line: “I know there’s people that are pissed about the way I mispronounced a name: “DIE ANTWOORD!” F**k, I still can’t say the sh*t/But how quickly they forget who the f**k I was” (“Greatest”)
Why: Eminem mentioned the South African band on Revival but was met with harsh digs for mispronouncing their name. The group threw their own harsh shot at the rapper by saying, “Ee-minem went to jail And got a bit of semen in his bum
And was never seen again.”
Line: “Tyler create nothin’, I see why you called yourself a f*****, b***h It’s not just ‘cause you lack attention/It’s ’cause you worship D12’s balls, you’re sack-religious/If you’re gonna critique me, you better at least be as good or better” (“Fall”)
Why: Many have called this diss uncalled for due to Tyler’s fan-like comments on the rapper’s later albums. Over the years, Tyler has been vocal about his feelings on albums like Recovery, where Em moved towards a more pop sound. Eminem does use the f-word to suggest that the Cali artist has played up his sexuality for attention.
Line: “Aw, man! That BET cipher was weak, it was garbage/The Thing ain’t even orange—oh my God, that’s a reach!” and “Charlamagne gonna hate anyway Doesn’t matter what I say/Give me Donkey of the Day/What a way for 2018 to get underway” (“The Ringer”)
Why: Em wasn’t fond of Charlamagne’s critiques of his BET Hip-Hop Awards freestyle, where he took on Trump and police brutality. During his Brilliant Idiots podcast with Andrew Shultz, the media personality he called the diss a reach and also included him in his “Trash Artists of the Year” list.
Line: “And don’t make me have to give it back to Akademiks Say this s**t is trash again, I’ll have you twisted/Like you had it when you thought you had me slippin’ at the telly/Even when I’m gettin’ brain, you’ll never catch me with a thot” (“Fall”)
Why: The Everday Struggle co-host was also targeted for his thoughts on Revival. He also seems to know the ins and outs of Ak’s love life as he slammed him for his choice in women.
Line: “Somebody tell Budden before I snap, he better fasten it/Or have his body baggage zipped/The closest thing he’s had to hits is smackin’ b***hes” (“Fall”)
Why: For fans of Slaughterhouse and Shady Records, this might not come as a surprise. Joe has been vocal about his disdain for Em’s lyrical path as of late, due to his previous platform on Everyday Struggle and his Joe Budden Podcast. Joe might be retired from the rap game, but he’s hinted at the possibility or a return on Friday (Aug. 31) aka his birthday.
Line: “But I think it’s workin’, these verses Are makin’ him a wee bit nervous/And he’s too scurred to answer me with words/’Cause he knows that he will lyrically get murdered/But I know at least he’s heard it/’Cause Agent Orange just sent the Secret Service/To meet in person, to see if I really think of hurtin’ him/Or ask if I’m linked to terrorists/I said, “Only when it comes to ink and lyricists.”
Why: Well, why not?
Line: “While I take my ballsack and flick it like a light switch Like vice-president Mike Pence back up on my s***t in a sidekick” (“The Ringer”)
Why: See No. 11
Line: “If I press the issue just to get the anger out (brrr) Full magazine could take Staples out” (“The Ringer”)
Why: Similar to Tyler, Staples’ fan comments were taken a bit too close to the heart by Eminem. Staples took the jab in jest by tweeting it.
Line: “And then tell the Grammys to go and f**k themselves/They suck the blood from all the biggest artists like some leeches/So they nominate ‘em, get ‘em there, get a name to ‘em/See the show, every parasite needs a host/Then give Album of the Year to somebody that no one’s ever even heard of.”
Why: The criticism of the Recording Academy may stem from Em’s alliance to alliance to Beyonce, Jay-Z and Kendrick Lamar.
In the past three years, all artists have been snubbed in the Album of the Year category. Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly lost to Taylor Swift’s 1989 in 2016, Beyonce’s sonic wonder that was Lemonade lost out to Adele’s 25 in 2017 and Jay-Z’s adored 4:44 lost to Bruno Mars’ 24K Magic this year.
All of the aforementioned artists and their images were heavily promoted by the Recording Academy at the time of each ceremony, adding more curiosities of how the Academy uses artists from the hip-hop and R&B world for their own benefit.
Line: “I’ll ride through your cul-de-sac/Window cracked, bumpin’ your reference tracks/You collab on a referent rap, I have never said his raps”
Why: Em sings Drake’s praises on the album and even suggests that some of today’s rappers are attempting to mirror his artistry. This line can play into how reference tracks are seen in hip-hop today, given the Meek v. Drake war of 2015.
Line: “If you’re gonna critique me, you better at least be as good or better, get Earl the Hooded Sweater Whatever his name is to help you put together/Some words, more than just two letters.” (“Fall”)
Why: The line suggests Em is actually a fan of Sweatshirt’s or aware of his lyrical talents.
Line: “Must have missed my cat-scan that day I just threw a Tampax at Dre” (“Greatest”)
Why: With Dre executively producing the album, we’re sure it’s just jokes between the two.