Eminem's expansion of his 2009 comeback Relapse is cleverly titled Refill, playing off the prescription pill artwork of the original album while offering precisely what it promises: another seven songs in the same vein as the original. Generally, these songs retain much of the carnivalesque horror show vibe of Relapse -- when Slim Shady raps about "Buffalo Bill" it's not about the Wild West, it's the Silence of the Lambs -- but the vibe is looser, helped in part by an increased Jamaican influence but largely deriving from Eminem's re-entry to the world. Unlike the bulk of Relapse, Refill doesn't sound like the work of a hip-hop Daniel Plainview -- a mad genius locked in his mansion, forever stewing over his long-held obsessions -- but sounds like an artist re-engaging with the world, trying new phrasing, opening up his music. Rather than a finished statement, this is experimentation, pointing the way toward what he'll do next time around, but there's one considerable exception: the new single "Forever," which has verses by Drake, Lil' Wayne, and Kanye West, and is none too coincidentally the one track in the entirety of Eminem's 2009 comeback that feels utterly modern.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2