In 2019, the emo-rap star Juice WRLD died of an accidental drug overdose. He was 21. Since Juice WRLD’s death, a lot of his music has come out, including the extremely successful album Legends Never Die and the hit Eminem collaboration “Godzilla.” Now, one of the figures responsible for discovering Juice WRLD is getting ready to release an album, and the first single is another song that Juice WRLD left behind before dying.
Presumably, Juice WRLD and his peer Cordae recorded their track “Doomsday” before Juice WRLD’s death. On the song, the two of them trade fiery bars over the beat from Eminem’s 1999 classic “Role Model,” and they embrace the cartoonish spirit of the original song. “Doomsday” is coming out as the first single from Lyrical Lemonade, the media company founded by the video director Cole Bennett. Bennett directed most of Juice WRLD’s videos, and he helped introduce the world to the rapper in 2017 and 2018.
Cole Bennett’s “Doomsday” video is an unsettling thing. The clip messes around with old-school Eminem aesthetics, and it starts off with a cameo from the 1999 bottle-blonde version of Eminem — one that’s presumably been AI-generated. In the clip, the faces of Cordae and Juice WRLD morph into each other. I guess it’s possible that Juice recorded the video before he died, but the effect is more like seeing a dead actor return, in CGI form, in a franchise blockbuster. At the end of the video, we see Juice WRLD and Cordae in the studio, excitedly rapping along with the track and tossing around video ideas, and that’s a whole lot more heartening than all the morphing hijinks. Check it out below.
The Lyrical Lemonade album is coming out later this year.