Encore (Eminem album)

Encore
Studio album by Eminem
Released November 12, 2004
Recorded 2002–2004
Genre Hip hop, hardcore hip hop[1]
Length 76:40
Label Aftermath, Interscope
Producer Dr. Dre (exec.)
Eminem, Luis Resto, Mike Elizondo, Mark Batson
Eminem chronology
The Eminem Show
(2002)
Encore
(2004)
Relapse
(2009)
Singles from Encore
  1. "Just Lose It"
    Released: September 28, 2004
  2. "Encore"
    Released: November 9, 2004
  3. "Like Toy Soldiers"
    Released: January 24, 2005
  4. "Mockingbird"
    Released: April 25, 2005
  5. "Ass Like That"
    Released: June 7, 2005

Encore is the fifth studio album by American rapper Eminem. Its release was set for November 16, 2004, but was moved up to November 12 (coincidentally, exactly eight years to the day his debut album, Infinite, was released) after the album was leaked to the Internet. Encore sold 710,000 copies in its first three days.[2] Encore sold 1,582,000 copies in its first two weeks of release in the United States in November 2004,[3] and was certified quadruple-platinum there in mid-December.[4] As of June 25, 2010, it had sold 5.2 million copies in the US.[5] Nine months after its release, worldwide sales of the album stood at 11 million copies.[6] Critical reception was generally positive. However, most critics and fans alike did note the subpar quality of the lyrics, which were more simplistic when compared to previous albums. The album was nominated for three Grammys at the 48th Annual Grammy Awards including for Best Rap Album but lost to Kanye West's Late Registration. The album made digital history in becoming the first album to sell 10,000 digital copies in one week.[7]

Contents

Content and censorship

This album touches a variety of subjects, including his relationship with his ex-wife, Kim, ("Puke", "Love You More", and "Crazy In Love"), his daughter Hailie Jade Mathers ("Mockingbird"), some anti-Bush statements ("Mosh" and "We As Americans"). Also, he mentions his childhood ("Yellow Brick Road"), and his relationships with his parents ("Evil Deeds"). "Just Lose It" is a parody of Michael Jackson's "Beat It", as well as a Pepsi commercial in 1984. Similar to Eminem's previous album, The Eminem Show, Encore opens with a skit called "Curtains Up", indicative of the start of the show.

Eminem has stated on numerous occasions (including on his 2010 album Recovery) that it was during the recording of Encore that he began to form an addiction to prescription drugs, and that he was not pleased with the album.

Simultaneously with the original, a censored version was released, from which the profanities, violent and sexual content, as well the drug references had been edited. "My 1st Single" has a bleep instead of a muted part in the verse "This was supposed to be my first single, my I just fucked that up. Fuck it let's all have some fun" like the clean version of "The Real Slim Shady". The word "ass" isn't censored out in "Yellow Brick Road" and "We As Americans", but is in "Ass Like That". In the "clean" version's album booklet, the written lyrics have been removed, however on the songs "Puke", "My 1st Single" and "Just Lose It", lyrics were changed to avoid long censorship. Other profanities on all other songs are just blanked out; for example, the song "Ass Like That" is listed as "A** Like That". The song "Encore/Curtains Down" took out the shooting sequence that appears at the end of the track. Also, on the track "One Shot 2 Shot", the intro to the song is completely wiped and the censored version starts out right at the first chorus and the clean version has at least half of the lyrics blanked out, most significantly Eminem's verse; during some parts, entire lines, sometimes two in a row, are blanked out.

Reception

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars[1]
Blender 4/5 stars[8]
Robert Christgau (A)[9]
Entertainment Weekly (C-)[10]
HipHopDX 3.5/5 stars[11]
Metacritic (64/100)[12]
Pitchfork Media (6.5/10)[13]
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars[14]
Village Voice (A)[15]
USA Today 3.5/4 stars[16]

Upon its release, Encore received positive reviews from most music critics.[17] At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 64, based on 26 reviews, which indicates "generally favorable reviews".[17]

Despite the commercial success of the album, it has been subject to some criticism for its tone and greatly simplified lyricism compared to Eminem's past albums. Conversely, in terms of controversy, this album attracted less notoriety than previous Eminem albums due to the fact that shock-oriented lyrics were toned down somewhat in favor of a lighter approach than Eminem's previous three albums. However, the album did provoke some controversy over anti-Bush lyrics and lyrics that parodied and targeted Michael Jackson, who was upset about Eminem's depiction of him in the video for "Just Lose It". On December 8, 2003, the United States Secret Service admitted it was "looking into" allegations that Eminem had threatened the President of the United States, George Bush,[18] after the song "We as Americans", as an unreleased bootleg, circulated with the lyrics "Fuck money, I don't rap for dead presidents. I'd rather see the president dead." The incident was later referenced in the video for his song "Mosh" as one several news clips on a wall, along with other newspaper articles about other unfortunate incidents in Bush's career. The song eventually appeared on the album's bonus disc, where the lyrics were extensively censored.

Eminem himself has shown his disapproval of the album, largely because he became addicted to prescription drugs at this time: the album, along with The Slim Shady LP, The Marshall Mathers LP and The Eminem Show, is mentioned in his song "Be Careful What You Wish For" on the original bonus disc of Relapse. He mentions the critics saying that Encore didn't match the caliber of the other albums. On the song "Talkin' 2 Myself" on his album Recovery, he raps that the album "doesn't count" due to the drugs involved.

Accolades

The album earned Eminem three Grammy Award nominations at the 48th Annual Grammy Awards: these included Best Rap Album, Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group for the song "Encore" and Best Rap Solo Performance for the song "Mockingbird". However, it did not win any of them making it the only Eminem's major studio album not to win a Best Rap Album award.

Track listing

No. Title Producer(s) Length
1. "Curtains Up" (skit)   0:47
2. "Evil Deeds"   Dr. Dre 4:20
3. "Never Enough" (featuring 50 Cent & Nate Dogg) Dr. Dre, M. Elizondo 2:39
4. "Yellow Brick Road"   Eminem, L. Resto 5:46
5. "Like Toy Soldiers"   Eminem, L. Resto 4:57
6. "Mosh"   Dr. Dre, M. Batson 5:18
7. "Puke"   Eminem, L. Resto 4:08
8. "My 1st Single"   Eminem, L. Resto 5:03
9. "Paul" (skit)   0:32
10. "Rain Man"   Dr. Dre 5:14
11. "Big Weenie"   Dr. Dre 4:27
12. "Em Calls Paul" (skit)   1:12
13. "Just Lose It"   Dr. Dre, M. Elizondo 4:09
14. "Ass Like That"   Dr. Dre, M. Elizondo 4:26
15. "Spend Some Time" (featuring Obie Trice, Stat Quo & 50 Cent) Eminem, L. Resto 5:11
16. "Mockingbird"   Eminem, L. Resto 4:11
17. "Crazy in Love"   Eminem, L. Resto 4:02
18. "One Shot 2 Shot" (featuring D12) Eminem, L. Resto 4:27
19. "Final Thought" (skit)   0:30
20. "Encore/Curtains Down" (featuring Dr. Dre & 50 Cent) Dr. Dre, M. Batson 5:48

Samples

Information taken from Encore liner notes:[19]

  • "Yellow Brick Road" contains samples of "Vocal Planet" by Spectrasonics and "Funkin Lesson" by X-Clan
  • "Like Toy Soldiers" contains a sample of "Toy Soldiers" by Martika and "The Hot Rock" (Main Title) by Quincy Jones.[20]
  • "Puke" contains elements from "We Will Rock You" by Queen.
  • "Spend Some Time" contains a interpolation of "Self Seeking Man" by Spooky Tooth.
  • "Crazy in Love" contains a sample of "Crazy on You" by Heart.
  • Dr. Dre makes a small appearance in "Rain Man", "Just Lose It" and "Ass Like That".
  • This is Eminem's first album, other than Infinite, to not have a Ken Kaniff and a Steve Berman skit. They both reappear in Relapse.
  • "Curtains Down" is a skit at the end of "Encore", which Eminem shoots everyone at his concert and kills himself. Some of the pictures in the booklet make reference to this.

Musical personnel

  • Mike Elizondokeyboards on tracks 2, 3, 6, 10, 11, 13, 14 and 20; guitar on tracks 6, 11, 13 and 20; sitar on track 14
  • Steve King – guitar on tracks 4, 5, 7, 15, 17 and 18; bass on tracks 4, 5, 7 and 17; mandolin on track 4; keyboards on track 11
  • Luis Resto – keyboards on tracks 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, 15, 16, 17, 18 and 20
  • Mark Batson – keyboards on tracks 2, 6, 10, 11, 13 and 20; bass on track 14
  • Che Vicious – programming on track 20

Singles and chart positions

Year Song Chart positions
US Billboard Hot 100 US Hot Rap Singles US Rhythmic Top 40 US Top 40 Mainstream US Top 40 Tracks UK Top 40
2004 "Just Lose It" 6 7 3 5 4 1
"Encore" 25 20 15 19 13
2005 "Like Toy Soldiers" 34 33 24 35 1
"Mockingbird" 11 10 6 6 10 4
"Ass Like That" 60 29 4
"—" denotes a title that did not chart, or was not released in that territory.

Charts

Chart (2004–2005) Peak
position
Australian Albums Chart[21] 1
Austrian Albums Chart[22] 2
Belgian Albums Chart (Flanders)[23] 2
Belgian Albums Chart (Wallonia)[23] 8
Canadian Albums Chart[24] 1
Czech Republic Albums Chart 1
Danish Albums Chart[25] 2
Finnish Albums Chart[26] 4
French Albums Chart[27] 1
German Albums Chart[28] 1
Hungarian Albums Chart[29] 24
Irish Albums Chart[30] 1
Italian Albums Chart[31] 6
Netherlands (Mega Album Top 100)[32] 2
New Zealand Albums Chart[33] 1
Norwegian Albums Chart[34] 2
Polish Albums Chart[35] 9
Spanish Albums Chart[36] 30
Swedish Albums Chart[37] 2
Swiss Albums Chart[38] 1
UK Albums Chart[39] 1
US Billboard 200[24] 1

Certifications

Country Certification
Argentina[40] Gold
Australia[41] 6× Platinum
Austria[42] Platinum
Belgium[43] Gold
Denmark[44] Platinum
Europe[45] 2× Platinum
Finland[46] Gold
France[47] 2× Gold
Germany[48] Platinum
Greece[49] Gold
Hong Kong[50] Gold
Ireland[51] 5× Platinum
Japan[52] Platinum
Mexico[53] Gold
New Zealand[54] 5× Platinum
Norway[55] Platinum
Russia[56] Platinum
Spain[57] Gold
Sweden[58] Gold
Switzerland[59] Platinum
United Kingdom[60] 3× Platinum
United States[4] 4× Platinum
Preceded by
Now 17 by Various Artists
Loyal to the Game by 2Pac
Billboard 200 number-one album
November 27, 2004 – December 4, 2004
January 8, 2005 – January 15, 2005
Succeeded by
How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb by U2
American Idiot by Green Day
Preceded by
Il Divo by Il Divo
UK number one album
November 20, 2004[61]
Succeeded by
How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb by U2
Preceded by
Mistaken Identity by Delta Goodrem
Australian ARIA Albums Chart number-one album
November 22, 2004
Succeeded by
How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb by U2

References

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