Machine Gun Kelly has done what few other rappers have dared to do. On Monday morning, he released a scathing diss track titled “Rap Devil” aimed at legendary wordsmith Eminem.
The track comes days after Eminem dissed Kelly on his new album Kamikaze, and sees the latter poking fun at everything from Eminem’s beard to the ways in which he appears to be out of touch with current pop culture. Give the track a listen below.
Of course, the reactions to the track have been varied. Twitter and Instagram have had plenty to say about “Rap Devil,” with many saying that Machine Gun Kelly has effectively ended his career by going after someone as technically gifted as Eminem. “MGK just released an Eminem diss track. I mean, it wasn’t bad, but you gotta go harder than that if you’re trying to go at Em,” wrote one user. “EM’s verse on “Not Alike” is harder than this whole song. Respect for trying, but take the L if Em comes back at you, because you ain’t winning.”
Another tweeted out: “Who is the godfather of Machine gun Kelly?? I just wanna ask him that didnt you teach him rule no. 1 of hip-hop i.e You don’t try to diss Eminem. Mgk is the stupidest motherf*cker of this generation. He’ll be remembered as an example for generations to come.”
Then there were others who felt that Machine Gun Kelly actually held his own against Eminem, and that his bars were more than respectable in comparison to Slim Shady’s. “The MGK response diss ain’t half bad if we’re keeping it real,” wrote one user. “Nothing lyrically phenomenal but I ain’t even gonna hold you, he definitely has some bars in that joint.”
“This MGK diss is pretty much everything we could’ve asked him to do,” another user observed. “He says sentiments that people have felt for a while, tea/drama, and a little wordplay in there too. Can’t count it as a victory yet because Eminem’s was more a warning shot. But MGK brought smoke.”
The feud between Machine Gun Kelly and Eminem was sparked on the Em track “Not Alike,” where he rapped: “But next time you don’t gotta use Tech N9ne if you wanna come at me with a sub-machine gun / And I’m talking to you but you already know who the f*ck you are, Kelly / I don’t use sublims and sure as f*ck don’t sneak-diss / But keep commenting on my daughter Hailie.”
The last line references a 2012 tweet that Machine Gun Kelly sent out where he commented on the good looks of Em’s daughter Hailie Scott-Mathers. “Ok, so I just saw a picture of Eminem’s daughter,” he wrote. “And I have to say, she is hot as f*ck, in the most respectful way possible because Em is king.” The tweet sparked controversy because Hailie was only 16 at the time, and Kelly was 21.
In an interview with Ebro In the Morning, Kelly spoke on the negative impact that the tweet has had on his career. “At the time, I didn’t think that that was a thing,” he said. “I’ll tell you this situation, ‘cause this is something that I feel like – quiet as it’s kept – is the reason why certain things [don’t happen]. Pictures of Hailie had came out, and I’m like, what, 20 years old, 21 at the time? I said ‘She’s beautiful, but all respect due. Eminem is king. What’s wrong with that?”
“Is there a 15-year age gap where I’m a creep for that? I was 21, dawg,” he continued. “Certain people took it, and ran with it and hyped it up. Certain people won’t even listen or review [my album]. Certain places, you won’t even hear Machine Gun Kelly on. Certain things won’t even happen.”