10. Criminal (First Verse) The Marshall Mathers LP
One of Eminems greatest tracks and a superb closer to his best album, the first verse of Criminal neatly articulates just what Marshall Mathers has always been about as a musician, a public figure and a person. Not the first king of controversy, but certainly one of the cleverest, this rapturously delivered opening verse cuts from blatant provocation targeting the LGBT community - tongue firmly in cheek to scathing remarks on middle American Baptist hypocrites and a very honest acceptance of his own fans stupidity. It covers a good few bases for one verse. The rhythm he holds is flawless; the awareness is at its peak; the words are some of his best.
My words are like a dagger with a jagged edge That'll stab you in the head, whether you're a f*g or lez Or the homosex, hermaph or a trans-a-vest Pants or dress, hate f*gs, the answer's "yes" Homophobic? Nah, you're just heterophobic Staring at my jeans, watching my genitals bulging That's my m*therfuckin' balls, you'd better let go of 'em They belong in my scrotum, you'll never get hold of 'em! "Hey, it's me, Versace! Whoops, somebody shot me! And I was just checking the mail, get it? Checking the 'male'?" How many records you expecting to sell After your second LP sends you directly to jail? Come on, relax guy, I like gay men Right, Ken? Give me an amen! (A-men!) "Please Lord, this boy needs Jesus Heal this child, help us destroy these demons Oh, and please send me a brand new car And a prostitute while my wife's sick in the hospital" Preacher preacher! Fifth grade teacher! You can't reach me, my mom can't neither You can't teach me a goddamn thing cause I watch TV and Comcast cable And you ain't able to stop these thoughts You can't stop me from topping these charts And you can't stop me from dropping each March With a brand new CD for these f*ckin' retards And to think, it's just little old me Mr. Don't Give a F*ck still won't leave
A mythical hedonist, a chronic solipsist, a poet armed with a mouth full of adjectives, a brain full of adverbs and a box full of laxatives. Writing words in a language that isn't real to impress people that I invented since The Big Bang.