Eminem receiving criticism over his lyrics is nothing new, and now it is happening again. He just released a surprise new album, Music To Be Murdered By, and the album features a reference to the 2017 Manchester Arena bombing, which happened at an Ariana Grande concert.
On “Unaccommodating,” which features Young MA, Eminem raps, “I’m contemplating yelling ‘Bombs away’ on the game / Like I’m outside of an Ariana Grande concert waiting.”
The event was a tragedy that impacted many lives, so a lot of backlash has been directed towards Eminem since the album’s release just hours ago.
Figen Murray, whose son died during the bombing, wrote on Twitter, “Feels like he is piggybacking on the fame of Ariana grande and Justin bieber and says distasteful things about other celebrities. Not clever. Totally pointless. And before all Eminem fans pounce on me, I am not interested and will not engage.”
Ok, I just watched the 11 min clip. Feels like he is piggybacking on the fame of Ariana grande and Justin bieber and says distasteful things about other celebrities. Not clever. Totally pointless. And before all Eminem fans pounce on me, I am not interested and will not engage. https://t.co/fE9MbepeqN
— Figen Murray (@FigenMurray) January 17, 2020
Murray has campaigned for Martyn’s Law (named after her son), which would bring airport-style security checks to concert venues. The new regulations have been approved in Manchester, and could soon be put into effect across the entire UK.
Meanwhile, an Eminem fan from Manchester wrote, “I’m a huge Eminem fan but the lyric about the Manchester bombing is so disrespectful. Possibly my all-time favourite artist has left me disappointed with such a bizarre and hurtful lyric aimed at my city.”
I’m a huge Eminem fan but the lyric about the Manchester bombing is so disrespectful. Possibly my all-time favourite artist has left me disappointed with such a bizarre and hurtful lyric aimed at my city. #staystrongourkid
— meg⚡️ (@megmcgreavy) January 17, 2020
This actually isn’t the first time Eminem has referenced the bombing in his lyrics. In his a capella “Kick Off” freestyle from 2018, he rapped, “Squashed in between a brainwashing machine / Like an Islamic regime, a jihadist extreme radical / Suicide bomber that’s seeing / Ariana Grande sing her last song of the evening / And as the audience from the damn concert is leaving / Detonates the device strapped to his abdominal region / I’m not gonna finish that, for obvious reasons.”
Eminem, by the way, implored his fans to donate to the British Red Cross shortly after the bombing happened.
— Marshall Mathers (@Eminem) May 25, 2017
In a 2018 interview, Grande said of the bombing, “Music is supposed to be the safest thing in the world. I think that’s why it’s still so heavy on my heart every single day. I wish there was more that I could fix. You think with time it’ll become easier to talk about. Or you’ll make peace with it. But every day I wait for that peace to come and it’s still very painful.”
Find more reactions to Eminem’s controversial new lyrics below.
eminem really said “But I’m contemplating [something] bombs away on the game like I’m outside of an Ariana grande concert waiting” then a bomb noise on his new album….
— alex (@thelightiscumn) January 17, 2020
Eminem singing "I’m contemplating yelling bombs away on the game like I’m outside an Ariana Grande concert" is being applauded? It's fucking insensitive. Call me a cupcake idc but it's fucking disgusting. It was traumatic for both @ArianaGrande and her fandom.
— Lily (@feversdreamhigh) January 17, 2020
Eminem released a new album and it has a song that mocks the Manchester bombing. How can someone mock a situation that mentally fucked with people's heads and always will? Jesus Christ that bomb killed 22 innocent people. Get off your high horse and stop looking for attention🙄
— Cillian (@itscillianx) January 17, 2020
eminem stans are really trying to defend his joke about a terrorist attack that killed 22 people and gave ariana PTSD…literally bye
— angie – circles out now !! (@fckinggrateful) January 17, 2020
Okay I’m pissed off because i’m a big fan of you and you put bullshit like this in a song I was there that night the bomb went off and I’m honestly just done with ur music if this is how ur gonna be pic.twitter.com/pXzjBqgJjk
— Hollie 🌹fan acc (@grandebyhoran) January 17, 2020
Love @Eminem but how can he reference the Manchester suicide bomb attack like that in his song! He should now donate money to the family’s or sumet
— Danny (@ITS_MR_D) January 17, 2020
eminem literally just made a joke about the manchester bombing at ariana grande’s concert… that is just so fucking sick, y’all better not give this man any attention. people literally lost their lives, and you’re going to release music and try to make a profit off of them? pic.twitter.com/mKJo06RL9p
— chris (mariestakis) (@sweeterheavens) January 17, 2020
Eminem releasing a surprise album featuring an Ariana Grande bomb joke is not it. Releasing it on the day Mac Miller’s final album comes out is even worse. Fuck outta here
— Liam Radburn (@LiamRadburn) January 17, 2020
Music To Be Murdered By is out now via Shady Records/Aftermath/Interscope. Get it here.