In the second time Em performed “Walk On Water” without the assistance of Beyonce in the past week, he knocked it out of the park by transforming it into a crowd-pleasing medley of his biggest pop hits.
Thankfully, the studio version of the track is already a stripped-down, acoustic piano production, which translates perfectly and poignantly to the light-night TV format. With an orchestra and the angelic-voiced songwriter Skylar Grey singing backup and a relatively straightforward stage setup, Em holds court with just the mic stand and a spotlight, snapping through the wordy verses and letting the chorus swell with the string section, emphasizing the song’s emotional message. Fans exploded at the end of the performance when he transitioned into a plaintive version of his dictionary-expanding hit, “Stan,” then into his Rihanna-featuring “Love The Way You Lie,” both supported by Grey, a longtime collaborator who wrote the chorus on the latter.
Eminem’s pair of performances tonight would have been perfectly timed to the release of his ninth studio album, Revival, which was rumored to be just this past Friday. However, November 17th has come and gone with no sign of the album. When the release does happen, it will cap a 2-month-long promotional cycle that kicked off with the Detroit MC’s much-lauded BET Hip-Hop Awards Freestyle, which attacked President Donald Trump with a litany of complaints and insults, which caused some consternation among their mutual fans. Despite some criticism, the freestyle generated a frenzy for the album’s eventual release, but it looks like we will have to wait a while to find out whether or not the LP lived up to expectations.