Why Eminem's New Surprise Album Has People Talking

Guess who's back? Eminem surprised fans by dropping Music to Be Murdered By — Side B, a deluxe version of his January 2020 LP, Music to Be Murdered By, also a surprise album. This new release, however, is more like a sequel record, according to Pitchfork, since it has 16 new tracks and features collaborators Dr. Dre, Ty Dolla $ign, Skylar Gray, and DJ Premier.

On his second studio album of the year, the rapper touches on a variety of timely subjects, ranging from Breonna Taylor and COVID-19 to Colin Kaepernick and Harvey Weinstein, according to The Detroit News.

However, those topics aren't the ones that have people talking about Eminem's new record. One track on Music to Be Murdered By — Side B, called Zeus, references two other heavy-hitters in the hip-hop industry, one in a positive way, and the other in a negative way. Let's start with the good news first.

Eminem apologizes to Rihanna for old lyrics about Chris Brown

Eminem seems to be waving a white flag to singer Rihanna in the track "Zeus", apologizing for a 10-year-old song that leaked in 2019, according to Pitchfork. That song, recorded during the making of Eminem's 2009 record Relapse, had the following lyrics about musician Chris Brown assaulting Ri in 2009, according to XXL.

"I'm not playing Rihanna where'd you get the V.D. at?" Eminem raps. "Let me add my two cents/Of course I side with Chris Brown/I'd beat a b***h down, too."

After the leak, a spokesperson for Eminem released a statement to XXL. "After Eminem recorded it, he scrapped it, and rewrote it. Obviously he and Rihanna have a great relationship."

However, it seems Em finally wanted to set the record straight for himself in his new release, rapping, "But, me, long as I re-promise to be honest, and wholeheartedly, apologies, Rihanna. For that song that leaked, I'm sorry, Ri. It wasn't meant to cause you grief. Regardless, it was wrong of me."

Time will tell if Rihanna, who partnered with the rapper on the hit Love the Way You Lie in 2010, accepts this new apology.

Eminem also disses rapper Snoop Dogg for leaving him off top 10 rapper list

In the same song that he squashes old beef, Eminem starts some new — with fellow rapper Snoop Dogg. On "Zeus," he raps, "And as far as squashin' beef, I'm used to people knockin' me. But, just not in my camp. I'm diplomatic, 'cause I'm tryna be. Last thing I need is Snoop doggin' me. Man, dog, you was like a damn God to me. Man, not really. I had dog backwards."

The outlet credits the diss for the fact that Snoop Dogg failed to include Eminem on his list of the Top 10 Rappers Ever during an interview on The Breakfast Club morning show, according to BroBible.

Snoop tried to justify the snub (via BroBible), saying, "[Dr. Dre] has probably put Eminem in the position where he could be labeled as one of the top ten rappers ever. I don't think so, but the game thinks that he's top ten lyricists and all that that comes with it. That's just because he's with Dr. Dre and Dr. Dre helped him find the best Eminem that he could find."

Now we can only wonder: Will Snoop's next album contain an apology to Em — or a clapback?