Eminem, a mere day after announcing the release date of his November album "The Marshall Mathers LP 2," gave fans a sample single. The rapper teased "Berzerk" via a promotional trailer on his website Sunday night, but the full track has become available.
The single is old school on a number of levels. For one, there's an obvious '80s flavor happening during the instrumentals. The samples chosen both reflect on the genre, including a thumping guitar riff from Billy Squier's 1981 hit "The Stroke," plus a smattering of Beastie Boys references, including the cowbell bridge from 1989's "Hey Ladies." The "video" posted for the song also pays homage to the Beastie Boys, just featuring a boombox playing a cassette tape of the single (the Boys used a similar idea when promoting their final album, "Hot Sauce Committee Pt. 2"). Just to make sure the vibe was clear, Eminem went with Rick Rubin for production, the dude behind Beastie classics such as "Licensed to Ill." Toss in turntable scratching and a lyrical reference to N.W.A.'s MC Ren, and it's clear what decade Em's mind is in.
The lyrics are "old school" for Eminem in a different sense however, hearkening back to his Slim Shady days. The lyrical darkness (and reality) of his most recent albums "Relapse" and "Recovery" has been put aside, for now, so that the rapper can take potshots at celebrities and invoke women to "shake your body."
"Berzerk" is the second single that's been released from "The Marshall Mathers LP 2" so far. The track "Survival" was released as part of a trailer for the video game "Call of Duty: Ghosts" midway through August.