I Want Some Answers

Seriously Em…. what’s your problem with Al? You were nice enough to make him your DJ when Green Lantern sold the Shady Records camp down the river, but you couldn’t put your own shitty production efforts to the side to zone out to some Alchemist tracks? Al’s not only top 5 dead or alive (alongside Dilla, Buckwild, Premier, and Just Blaze) when it comes to hip-hop producers who haven’t yet traded in their snare drums for weak 808 claps, he’s also a product of where you come from…. the underground. No, not that coffee shop pump your fist in the air, i have long dreads and still think Smif N Wessun is the greatest group ever type of underground bullshit that survives today (No disrespect to Smif N Wessun, but just saying).

I’m talking about the Game Records Shecky Green days, back when you were sounding like something truly original, something nobody had ever heard before, outshining Royce on “Scary Movies” Eminem sounded so fucking incredible on that Reef beat. I want to hear him sounding like he did with his then peers on this famous DJ Revolution track . And even at that point, he was already into his career, but hadn’t really blown up yet. Still, it sounded like he had semblance of 3rd party perspective on his music. Like there was someone, perhaps even his inner conscience, telling him the beat was dope and that he should kick some groundbreaking shit.

Ever since Em started producing for himself his music has been sort of stale. Not saying it sucks, but it’s been hit or miss. He hasn’t released much as of late, but whatever he’s done since like 2004 has been kinda shit sandwich-ish. Like Encore and that terrible 2pac soundtrack to Resurrection from a year earlier. It’s like he makes these big sweeping productions that could be incredible, but instead just sort of plod along without any real momentum. Something like “Mosh” could have been incredible, but instead just seemed kinda boring. Perhaps it’s me. But that stuff he did in the late 90s and in the early part of the new millenium had balls to it. That shit made you wanna recite those lyrics. Made you wanna nod your head.

That’s what Alchemist beats still do. Every rapper this dude does a track for, even the lyrically challenged ones, sound good on Alchemist beats. So you’re gonna let a tour bus accident stop you from working with him. When my man DJ Treats spoke to him in this Complex interview, Al said:

…being Eminem’s DJ was bigger than being the Alchemist. It was embracing that and realizing, where is this going to take us. It seemed like, it wasn’t the accident that did it, but ever since that shit it fucked a lot of things up. The tour got thrown off, my brother got hurt real bad and it kind of put things in a weird turn. Since then I haven’t been able to develop the way I thought me and Eminem was going to work. So the crash was really a pivotal point man.

Come on man, put that shit to the side and get with Al. He can make people care about you for your music and your skills again. For making good records. Look at what Dre and the 45 King did for your career when nobody really gave much of a fuck about you. Al can do it for you. And he’s just a phone call away.

Recommended for You

Around the Web

Best of XXL

  • n word

    white people rally around and rejoice!!

  • http://myspace.com/marko4aoc Marko-V

    Do you really think Em is lookin at his career like that? Probably not. Slim’s more concerned wit increasin his longevity through production not through lyrics. Besides, it seems to me that he loves a challenge and being hailed as one of the best emcees to spit has allowed him to move on to seek another challenge, namely beatmaking. True Al is ill but, when you’ve worked wit Dre can you really make a case for workin wit anyone else?

    • ty from linden blvd

      this is my problem wit em…besides dre and the 45 king he’s never worked wit any other great producing legends.

      what about timbaland?that would be a hit.

      what if em did a track wit primo??pete rock?large professor??rza?if he worked wit alc or any of the dudes i named on one album it possibly be teh greatest shit ever.dude has sold millions of records and made millions of dollars,why not just take it back to some grimey dirty production??

  • http://www.incilin.blogspot.com Incilin

    Yeah I’ve wonder why Em and Al haven’t worked together as well. To tell you truth, as nice as it would be I don’t ever really see it happening. But I’d happy to hear Al beats whenever I can. That dude is one of the best producers around.

    Now, as far as Em falling off. It’s funny how no blogger ever seems to want to write about how bad he fell off. No one really wants to discuss the topic. I don’t know why that is.

    But since you bring it up, I don’t think it was when that Em started producing is when he started falling off. Now you may be a bigger fan of the younger Eminem than I (Sure he was great, but he was kinda unfocused), but his prime was through the Marshall Mathers LP.

    But you got to remember Em had been producing a while. He actually produced some of his most popular beats, ones like “Way I Am” and “Till I Collapse” as well as the more recent “You Don’t Know” and even “Renegade” Overall his still a pretty crapy producer but they didn’t seem to be effecting his rhymes then so I don’t really think their effecting them now.

    What really wore Em out was 1) Em, the nature of the rap game is artists only get 5 good years and they burn out creatively and hip hop fans are so fickle anyhow 2) Believe it or not, Benzino. Although Em destroyed him five times over in the battles even he had to admit he was exhausted

  • T.R.E.Y.

    i was gonna say something about the top 5 dead or alive placement with Buckwild and Dilla, but i can’t tell if you’re just talking a specific type of producer. if so that might not be the reach i thought.

  • http://www.xxlmag.com Gooch

    yes, it was definitely a specific type of producer i was highlighting for my top5

  • Crimson

    That era is gone, man. This is just some rap nerd’s wishlist shit.

  • n word

    eminem and alchemist?

    white people rejoice!!

  • http://www.z6.invisionfree.com/Exodus_From_Bnw Shade

    How can you not have Dr. Dre in your top 5? No slight to the others, they are ill, but Dre has stayed consistent and sick. Yes, the beats he did for Curtis weren’t *amazing*, but that Fire joint was pretty decent.

    When Dre is having an off day, he’s still better than 90-95 percent of other producers.

  • SayQua

    Tell ‘em Gooch

  • DirtDogggy

    Em’s bin depressed and fucked on pills since 2004. He never fell off he just fell out, I agree some of his beats are crusty shmagma, he has the potential to make another classic album but only if he say fuck the media and does things his own way and gets some sick beats on there, I have a feeling his album will sell more than anything the last few years though, people are still interested and the Stans will make it plat the first day as long as it doesn’t leak to early..

  • BK Cyph

    I was never much of an Em fan (although he is incredible dope lyrically- he just never spoke to me thru his music)

    That being said once he started producing for himself, his music has gotten worse, besides a few gems like “Cleaning out my Closet” and “Lose Yourself” from 8 Mile.

    Him and Al could make that ill shit that Em came into the game with. Remember “5 Star Generals” when he bodied everyone on the record?

  • http://governmentnames.blogspot.com Government Names

    This post was something that needed to be said. Alchemist is the illest white boy producer in the game and Em should stop trying to take the spot and just get some of his beats. Really, Alc should be all over G-Unit’s last few projects and he was barely even on the Mobb album, dude’s the main reason that the Prodigy album was hot.


    I think they worked together already… Didn´t Al put down some joints on that Mixtape-Album last year? And that wasn´t all that neither…

    Top 5 Dead or alive? He aint innovative enough for that one. His shit is bangin, his sample game is crazy, no doubt! But it aint groundbreaking like Primo, Dilla, Dre or Kanye at their Prime. The most current cat I´d consider Top 5 is Toomp. That dude is crack. That popular southern sound flipped on some real artistic shit! Fiyah!

    Ems production is sorta stale. I think it´s because he works with too many musicians who help him out on keys, string arrangements and bass. And these dudes obviously dont have ears for hiphop! All he probably does is do the drums. Thats why the final product usually too polished and stale! Theres exceptions tho… Stick to outside productions and stay away from that upbeat comicbook bubblegum sound!!! Then you´ll make a comeback!!!

  • Vindi

    I couldn’t agree more – Eminem’s production is MISS MISS MISS HIT, off the top of my head I can only recall RENEGADE (JAY-Z) or INSTIGATOR (D12)as his best there’s no denying it, yes his beats are designed to compliment his style however I’d love to hear Eminem on Just Blaze, Kanye West, DJ PREMIER tracks – my view is spending money on other producers apart from Dre would strecth his budget and he’s maybe being cheap – similar to G-Unit using ‘unknown’ producers and picking rather average beats which do spoil their albums

  • Re-yo

    Top 5 Dead Or Alive:

    Pete Rock
    Marley Marl

  • http://www.myspace.com/sinistahmoneybagz Sinistah aka Angry Blackman At Work

    maybe Em thought Alchemist was a Fed too……

  • Josh

    The real question is why isn’t he rocking over Reef beats!??!

  • Nor Cal Mufuckas!!

    Finally someone on this site is speaking some truth. Fuck what happened to EM. He definatley needs to go more underground with his beats and leave the Dre beats and his alone. He would be the best selling artist again if he went this direction and ignored his fucking ego for just one album.

  • nicky j

    em’s best album was infinite

  • May

    Em’s best album was the marshall mathers lp. hands down. it was released seven years ago but i still play it. the marshall mathers lp still sounds good.

    Yeah, the beats to ENCORE have been terrible. I was like, “What the f*ck am I listening to? What the f*ck did he just create?” I rarely ever listen to ENCORE anymore…and plus the lyrics are mediocre too.

    As for Em working with Al, I dunno. When I first hear that he employed Alchemist as his DJ I was looking forward to that. I felt that they’d make great music together.

    Maybe Em doesn’t really want to work with others besides a few. That’s what it seems like to me. There’s a range of producers that he could collaborate with and learn from to make his sh*t sound better. Dre ain’t the only beatmaker in existence.

    Em is alright as a beatmaker but I don’t think he should make that his main hustle. Are rappers demanding Em’s beats? Nah, I don’t think so. You can disagree with me if you want…

  • May

    I meant to say, “When I first heard…”

    • 2Gutta

      emeinem has collab.. The Re-Up he did songs wit ALC

  • 2Gutta


  • yacine_

    MOSH was produced by Dre, not by Em. And Em already spit on some Alchemist beat : “GET BACK” (feat Proof & Bizarre).


    I Agree with Gooch…Eminems beats for the most part are soft….same kick and snare…same sound….he (was) way better as a rapper…now he’s on some humping a dog’s leg shit…WACK!

  • these posts are racist

    Great drop, and I agree.