If Relapse marked the return of Slim Shady and his outrageous rhymes, then the sequel is shaping up to be Marshall Mathers' turn back in the spotlight.
In an interview on his Shade 45 satellite-radio station Tuesday night, [artist id="502642"]Eminem[/artist] explained the concept behind the forthcoming Relapse 2.
"[The album] is gonna be a lot different than people expect," Eminem told DJ Tony Touch. "As far as the contrast from the last album to this one, I got a couple of tracks with [D12's] Mr. Porter, two tracks with him so far. Four, possibly five with Just Blaze. The overall basis of this record, I went back to songs that are more emotionally driven. The last record I made, I think I was concentrating more on spitting. On this album, I feel like there's some of that, but I went back to songs with [feelings] to them as opposed to just rap records."
During the recording of Relapse, Eminem admitted he suffered from writer's block at times, and to return to form, he revisited his earlier style of rhyme that helped him earn his alter ego. Songs like "Insane" and "Underground" showcased his rapid-fire flow and outrageous lines. "Dre, I'm down here, under the ground, dig me up/ Broken tibias, fibias, yeah, fix me up," he rapped on "Underground."
"I had to get it all out of my system," Em said of the lyrical urgency behind Relapse. "I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it again."
Once the Detroit MC broke free from his struggles with the pen, he went on to record three albums' worth of material. He and his camp decided to whittle the songs down to two projects. In April, the rapper announced that Relapse 2 was done before the first one even arrived. He said during the mixing process, new tracks might be added.
Recently, he's raised his profile with a guest verse on Drake's "Forever," also featuring Kanye West and Lil Wayne. His standout turn on the track increased anticipation for his next album. On "Forever," Eminem hearkened back to the "8 Mile" style that endeared him to fans with his personal tales.
The focus on polishing the second album, though, has consumed Eminem so much that he's only made scattered appearances since Relapse debuted in May. Once Relapse 2 arrives, tentatively later this year, Eminem said he'll decide then whether to go on tour.
"During the process of me getting sober and starting to record again like I used to, I got so excited about making music again that I wanted to concentrate [just] on that," he said. "I started recording so many records that we thought about putting out two albums. Then that became my motivation. I wanted to stay grinding and keep making music. But the time I got engulfed in [Relapse 2], it just kind of worked out this way, where I wanted to fall back from live performances for right now and concentrate on making the best music I could make. After this record comes out, we'll see what happens from there."