Monday, May 24, 1999

Eminem entertaining in short show at Bogart's

Enquirer contributor

        Fans of Detroit rapper Eminem, whose received a lot of attention with his debut, full-length CD The Slim Shady LP, discovered another good reason why he calls himself Slim Shady - his shows are slim on content.

        The packed house at Bogart's Saturday night was definitely hyped about this new rap sensation coming to town. However, with the sound of a few boos after the house lights went up, many left disappointed, as Marshall Bruce Mathers III, a k a Emi nem, performed for a meager 45 minutes - just five minutes longer than opening act, Pace Won.

        For the brief time he was onstage, Eminem was entertaining. He was almost constantly in motion, bouncing around, jumping up and down, and sliding down on his knees while he rapped, while cohort MC Proof doubled Em almost word for word. Musically, the beats, supplied by DJ Head, were simple and raw, mostly dark, deep bass lines accented with quirky, space noises.

        Eminem's act was rough and ener gized, much like his lyrics, which talk about guns, drugs, suicide, having sex with minors, dead-beat dads and dead-end jobs that pay minimum wage.

        His music has tapped into a young, mostly white, male audience - similar to the crowd on Saturday. And if anyone was offended or turned off by Em's violent, sometimes sarcastic, lyrics, they didn't show it.

        In fact, the crowd was wild, jumping and pumping their hands in the air, following Em's every word, finishing many of his rhymes.

        His vocals were quick, yet stiff at times. His voice was squeaky, high-pitched, and sounded weirdly electronic, thanks to a back-up tape that layered his words. But MC Proof's deep, baritone lines nicely contrasted Em's murky rhythms.

        It would also appear that no one was offended either with Pace Won, who invited several young women to join him and his crew onstage to show everyone their breasts. For it, each got a T-shirt and a backstage pass.


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