In this age of #metoo and Black Lives Matter, you could be forgiven for saying, “I just don’t give a f*** about a new Eminem album.” Really, who’s got the time to hear this angry former blonde clean out his closet yet again?

To his credit, the artist occasionally known as Marshall Mathers doesn’t shy away from this question in Revival. The lead track, “Walk on Water,” confronts it head on: [LISTEN]

Ironically, the internal and polysyllabic rhymes in those five lines indicate why Eminem is still worth an expletive. Also, it’s worth noting that he has not just maintained but improved his flow over the years. The man shifts between tempos and rhythms as smoothly as any rapper out there.

Perhaps most importantly, the shows of social responsibility on Revival don’t feel like some belated p.c. move. It helps to remember that, in his own way, Eminem has acknowledged and dissected white privilege since “White America” if not “I’m Back” from The Marshall Mathers LP. This makes the race relations analysis of “Untouchable” feel much less incongruous: [LISTEN]

That’s pretty good, but the lines about systemic oppression that follow are as detailed and sharp as Em’s epic anti-Trump freestyle. He anatomizes his dysfunctional relationship with his ex-wife Kim just as skillfully on “Bad Husband:” [LISTEN]

Still, it wouldn’t be an Eminem album with at least a little naughtiness. Tracks like “Heat” show that his bad-boy side is alive and well: [LISTEN]