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Eminem Branded ‘Sick’ For Rapping About Ariana Grande Concert Bombing

by : Emily Brown on : 17 Jan 2020 10:56
Eminem Branded 'Sick' For Joking About Ariana Grande Concert Bombing In New SongEminem Branded 'Sick' For Joking About Ariana Grande Concert Bombing In New SongPA Images

Eminem has received heavy backlash after releasing a song that makes light of the 2017 terrorist attack at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester. 

The rapper dropped a surprise new album, titled Music To Be Murdered By, in the early hours of January 17, treating fans to a music video as well as songs featuring the likes of late rapper Juice WRLD, Ed Sheeran, Anderson .Paak, Royce Da 5’9″, Skylar Grey and Young M.A.

While most of the new tracks have been welcomed by fans, the song Unaccommodating has been slammed for being undeniably inappropriate.

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The song is the second track on the album, and references the bombing that took place during Ariana’s concert in Manchester, UK, on May 22 2017. The heinous attack killed 22 people and injured many more.

In spite of the horrific nature of the event, Eminem used the bombing to form lyrics in Unaccommodating, rapping:

But I’m contemplating yelling ‘Bombs away’ on the game.

Like I’m outside of an Ariana Grande concert waiting.

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Ariana GrandeAriana GrandePA Images

The 47-year-old followed the lines with the sound of an explosion, adding insult to injury for all those who were affected by the horrific bombing.

Shortly after the album dropped, infuriated listeners took to social media to criticise Eminem for his insensitive lyrics.

One person wrote:

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eminem literally just made a joke about the manchester bombing at ariana grande’s concert… that is just so f*cking 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?

Another tweeted:

Eminem singing “I’m contemplating yelling bombs away on the game like I’m outside an Ariana Grande concert” is being applauded? It’s f*cking insensitive… It was traumatic for both @ArianaGrande and her fandom.

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Figen Murray, who lost her son Martyn Hett during the Manchester attack, also responded to the release, describing the decision to refer to the bombing as a ‘real shame’ and accusing Eminem of ‘piggybacking’ on the fame of Ariana.

Ariana does not appear to have addressed the hurtful lyric at the time of writing, January 17, though there’s no denying the song is thoughtless, disrespectful and cruel, especially to those whose lives were irreversibly changed by the attack.

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At the same time, however, Eminem’s decision to make the reference is not entirely surprising.

Unaccommodating is full of questionable lyrics, one of which involves Eminem making a pun out of al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden’s name.

He raps:

Here comes Saddam Hussein, Ayatollah Khomeini
Where’s Osama been? I been laden lately.

The song is certainly not alone in its reference to murders, attacks and suicide; Eminem’s recent releases have made numerous references to the dark topics, most clearly in the titles of his two most recent albums, Kamikaze and Music To Be Murdered By.

Eminem has repeatedly alluded to infamous murderers, including Richard Ramirez, aka the ‘Night Stalker’, Albert DeSalvo, known as the ‘Boston Strangler’, and Charles Manson​, and Unaccommodating is not the first time the rapper made reference to the Manchester bombing.

In the freestyle song Kick Off, released in November 2018, Eminem rapped:

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.

Though he has been accused of using tragedy to make a profit through his songs, Eminem has previously shown support for victims of the Manchester attack. Following the bombing, the rapper took to Twitter and encouraged his followers to donate to relevant charities.

In the song Darkness, which features on Eminem’s new album, the 47-year-old raps from the point of view of a mass shooter targeting people at a concert, akin to the 2017 shooting at the Route 91 Harvest music festival in Las Vegas, in which 58 people died and more than 400 were injured.

While the rapper’s decision to associate himself with such cruelty is a disturbing one, Eminem contradicts his apparent interest in murder by calling for his listeners to register to vote and change gun laws at the end of the music video for Darkness, suggesting that while his references are often distasteful, they work to raise awareness to acts of terror.

The surprise release of Music To Be Murdered By arrives on the same day as rapper Mac Miller’s posthumous album Circles, which Miller recorded before his untimely death in September 2018.

Mac MillerMac MillerPA Images

While the shared release date is likely coincidental, some of Ariana’s fans believe Eminem has rubbed salt in the wound as the thank u, next singer had previously been in a relationship with Miller.

One fan wrote:

Eminem really dropped an album the same day as Mac Miller posthumous album and made light of the Ariana Grande concert bombing. What a piece of sh*t.

Eminem has been releasing controversial lyrics for his entire career, but the fact that’s ‘what he does’ doesn’t excuse his insensitive references. Despite the backlash, however, his latest release suggests he’s not planning on changing his approach any time soon.

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Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.

Topics: Music, Ariana Grande, Eminem, Mac Miller, Manchester Bombing, Music To Be Murdered By, Rap