Producer: Bass Brothers
Album: The Marshall Mathers LP
Label: Aftermath/Interscope
Oh, man. Just as shocking today as it was when it was first released over a decade ago, "Kim" is a stunning work of horror that contains so much ugly truth it's difficult to listen to—but it's so powerfully performed that you have no choice but to be mesmerized by it. Slim Shady is supposed to be the insane alter ego of Eminem, yet how much of what he says and does in the prequel to "'97 Bonnie and Clyde" (which caused Kim to file a $10 million lawsuit for defamation against her ex-husband) is really raw human behavior magnified to disturbing degrees? "Kim" is performance art, shocking, cruel, and disgusting. But goddamn if Marshall Mathers (who excels at impersonating both the Slim and Kim characters) doesn't nail so many of the true-life moments couples in strained relationships go through—the extreme swings of emotions, the logical thought followed by irrational actions, the desperation, the hurt. An Oscar-worthy performance in a terrifying thrill ride (no one under 17 admitted).