Eminem’s “Revival”, the American rapper’s highly-anticipated new album, was released on December 15, 2017. As reported by Billboard on December 12, 2017, the 19-track album is armed to the teeth with a roster of top artists like Beyoncé, Ed Sheeran, P!nk, Kehlani, Alicia Keys and Skylar Grey.
Only one day after Billboard’s report, Eminem’s “Revival” found its way to P2P networks two days ahead of the official release date, enabling fans from all over the world to download and share songs from the new album.
During the last few months, demand for Eminem’s music has been unwavering, even though he hasn’t released any new albums in over four years. With an average of 20,000 P2P users sharing Eminem’s music every day, he regularly ranked among the top 25 music artists of the past few months, grabbing spot no. 17 in the music file sharing charts of October and climbing to spot no. 16 of top artists in November. Then, as a result of the heated anticipation for Eminem’s “Revival”, his ninth studio album, and the eleven torrent files permeating throughout the P2P networks, downloads of his music skyrocketed to more than 85,000 P2P users on December 14, 2017. When "Revival" was officially released the following day, another nine torrent files appeared in P2P networks, further heating up demand for Eminem’s music and resulting in almost 125,000 file sharers actively downloading and sharing Eminem songs. In particular, almost 90% of the file sharers went after tracks from “Revival”. To put this in perspective, the latest album release from Ed Sheeran, who is one of the most popular artists this year, triggered about 133,000 fans to download his music in P2P networks. However, as it stands today, Eminem has managed to reach the top spot in the world's file sharing chart of top artists for December.
But what did critics have to say about the new songs of Eminem’s “Revival”? Most people seem to be disappointed by the unstructured mix of genres across the album.
“Leaning on charisma-free collaborations, histrionic productions, and nearly half a dozen attempts to rewrite his 2010 hit “Love the Way You Lie,” “Revival” is a messy, ultimately exhausting misfire.” – Variety reported on December 15.*
“Production-wise, Revival is a trainwreck. If Eminem thinks his verbal box of tricks can overcome the weakness of any backing track, his recent albums have demonstrated otherwise.” […] Eminem is clearly a rapper, but there’s hardly a trace of hip-hop here. The guests – Alicia Keys, Pink, Ed Sheeran, Beyoncé – speak to pop-rap stadium-packing ambitions, as does the familiar song structure. We start off slow, he gets angrier, he explodes in incandescent rage, an anthemic vocal hook comes in. Repeat, for 77 minutes. – The Guardian recapped Eminem’s “Revival” on December 16.**
“Eminem has made the worst album of his career with Revival. It's a well-intended, tragically haphazard mess.”
- The 405 reported on December 15.***
All in all, the critics have been nearly unanimously negative with their reviews. Yet despite the many unsupportive voices raised in online magazines and blogs, file sharing statistics uncovered a huge demand for his music! Fans from all over the world loyally stand by Eminem and his latest work, like the pop-rap song "River", featuring the British singer Ed Sheeran or the Kehlani-featured, pop-driven song "Nowhere Fast".
LEAK OF EMINEM’S ‘REVIVAL’ BOOSTS AMERICAN FANS’ EUPHORIA
Only one day after the leak of Eminem’s “Revival”, almost a quarter of worldwide P2P users were located in the United States. At the city level, most Eminem fans were downloading and sharing his songs in Chicago and Los Angeles, followed by Brooklyn (New York), Houston and Philadelphia. On top of that, the majority of Eminem’s “Revival” fans in the United States connected to the internet via Comcast Cable, Time Warner Cable, T-Mobile USA, Verizon Wireless and AT&T U-verse.
At the international level, most “Revival” fans resided in Russia, India, the United Kingdom, and Canada, claiming spots 2–5 respectively after the United States.