On this day, exactly 19 years ago (Nov 12, 1996) Eminem released his first ever solo studio album Infinite. The album was recorded at the Bass Brothers’ studio, known as the Bassmint and produced by Mr. Porter and Jeff Bass. It features vocals from fellow rappers Proof, Mr. Porter, Eye-Kyu and Three. The album sold only about 1,000 copies, and is not available on any online music stores.
Eminem recalls: “Obviously, I was young and influenced by other artists, and I got a lot of feedback saying that I sounded like AZ. Infinite was me trying to figure out how I wanted my rap style to be, how I wanted to sound on the mic and present myself. It was a growing stage. I felt like Infinite was like the demo that just got pressed up.”
Allmusic gave it an “Editor Score” of 2.5 out of 5 stars, without a review. Rob Kenner of Complex gave the album an unfavorable review, saying Eminem “has yet to develop his own distinctive style”.
Coincidentally, exactly 8 years later and 11 years ago fro today Eminem released his 5th solo studio album Encore. Produced by Dr. Dre, Luis Resto and Eminem himself.
Many consider the album as the worst Eminem recorded to date. Upon its release, thr album received generally mixed to positive reviews. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 64, based on 26 reviews.
The album earned Eminem three Grammy Award nominations at the 48th Annual Grammy Awards, these included: Best Rap Album, Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group for the song “Encore” and Best Rap Solo Performance for the song “Mockingbird”. However, it did not win any of them, making it the only Eminem major studio album not to win a Best Rap Album award.
Encore sold 710,000 copies in its first three days, and went on to sell over 1.5 million copies in its first two weeks of release in the United States, certified quadruple-platinum that mid-December. Nine months after its release, worldwide sales of the album stood at 11 million copies. The album made digital history in becoming the first album to sell 10,000 digital copies in one week. As of November 2015, the album has sold almost 6,000,000 copies in the US and almost 22,000,000 worldwide.
To support Eminem and to celebrate Encore‘s 11 Years anniversary, please get the album on iTunes !