Eminem and Rihanna have conjured “The Monster” together on a new single, which feels neither monsterous nor — as Marshall Mather contends — crazy.
But that doesn’t make it forgettable. The repeating chorus is pretty catchy, trying to play in the same sonic game as Em and Rihanna’s mega-hit “Love the Way You Lie,” which dealt with similar personality extremes. Fans have heard the rapper waxing on his Jekyll and Hyde halves before, but here he’s claiming to be “friends” with his uglier, “monster” self, shooting shady at detractors who think he’s “crazy.” Why? “‘Well that’s not fair.”
A few seconds later on the electronic-backed track: “I’m think I’m getting so huge I need a shrink… / going cuckoo and kooky as Kool Keith.” So we’ll just hang with cuckoo?
This “crazy” title follows another, the first “Marshall Mathers LP 2” single “Berzerk,” which had a lot more fun than this. “Monster” has a better shot at regular top 40 airplay with Rihanna’s continuing star power, even with lackluster lyrics. These singles are bundled with other recent releases “Survival” and “Rap God” on the new album, which is due Nov. 5.