Why Can’t Eminem Make A Good Album Cover?

Christopher R. Weingarten / April 21, 2009

The art for Eminem’s fifth album, Relapse, leaked out today and it’s a doozy. (Note: Sometimes I misspell the word “doody,” so you might want to read that first sentence again.) It’s a mosaic of Marshall’s mug made of blue and yellow and purple pills! Kind of corny since when dude left us last he was all talking about growing up and being a father and an adult… Oh, and also because it’s a mosaic made out of pills. This dude has more money than 50 Cent—hell, he actually has a huge chunk of 50 Cent’s money! Why can’t he ever rig up a few inches of album art that looks presentable?

slimshady
1999: The Slim Shady LP. Dude was still on that horrorcore vibe and feuding with Cage, so I’ll forgive the dorkball slasher-flick shock tactics of basing an album cover around his wife’s toes hanging out the car trunk. But the purple-sepia tone makes everything look like you’re watching Prince fuck Barney behind a wedding veil. The images and signifiers are all easy to ignore, since the focus is apparently on a moon that that looks like a navel orange. (Side note: When do you think Eminem last thought about Cage?)

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2000: The Marshall Mathers LP. Oh, hi, guys. I’m just chilling on my porch thinkin’ of some heavy shit. Maybe like trimming this tree here.


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2002: The Eminem Show. You know we can see you, right? Anyway, this was the start of the G-Unit/Shady album cover era where everything looked like Photoshop layers fighting each other. Spoiler: He comes out from behind the curtain and raps, like, right away.


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2004: Encore. There’s a really good photo or two inside this book, but Interscope was probably too wussy to put them on the cover because they had guns and this is a company that has to somehow trick parents into buying this album for 12-year-olds.


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2009: Relapse. Truly, the equivalent of releasing an album that sounds like an Abe Lincoln portrait made of toast. Though “Prescribed by Dr. Dre” is pretty funny. How much do you want to bet that “refills” date is gonna say something different when this album comes out?

Eminem: Relapse Artwork [Nah Right]