Eminem drops surprise album, advocates changes to gun laws

Rapper Eminem once again dropped a surprise album, releasing “Music to Be Murdered By” on Friday — along with a video that calls for changes to gun laws.

The follow-up to 2018's “Kamikaze” — also released without warning — was announced on Twitter just after midnight.

The Detroit rapper's new music video for “Darkness,” one of the album's 20 tracks, depicts a shooting at a concert. The lyrics and storyline of the video specifically allude to the 2017 mass shooting at a music festival in Las Vegas that left 58 people dead, making it the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history. It closes with audio and video footage of news broadcasts from other recent mass shooting around the U.S. and an appeal to register to vote.

“When will this end? When enough people care," reads the text at the end of the video. "Register to vote at vote.gov. Make your voice heard and help change gun laws in America.”

A link to the music video on Eminem's website encourages viewers to contact or visit several gun violence prevention organizations, including Everytown for Gun Safety and Sandy Hook Promise.

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Eminem through the years
Rap artist Eminem. (Photo by Marion Curtis/DMI/The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images/Getty Images)
White American rapper Eminem, winner of the Best Hip Hop act award, makes his acceptance speech at the 1999 MTV Europe Music Awards. (Photo by Chris Bacon - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
UNSPECIFIED - JANUARY 01: Photo of EMINEM (Photo by Nigel Crane/Redferns)
NEW YORK CITY - SEPTEMBER 9: Rapper Eminem attends the 16th Annual MTV Video Music Awards on September 9, 1999 at the Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD - AUGUST 18: Rapper Eminem attends the Source Hip-Hop Music Awards on August 18, 1999 at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE -- Episode 1 -- Pictured: Musical guest Eminem performs on October 7, 2000 -- (Photo by: Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
378549 01: Hip Hop Artist Eminem (aka Marshall Mathers III) enters the courtroom of Judge Norris Langford in Oakland County Circuit Court in Pontiac, Michigan September 18, 2000. Eminem was accused of pointing a gun at someone. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Liaison)
(EXCLUSIVE, Premium Rates Apply) Eminem at the 27th Annual American Music Awards (Photo by Barry King/WireImage)
Eminem Performing At The Reading Festival, Britain - 27 Aug 2001, Eminem (Photo by Brian Rasic/Getty Images)
Eminem during MTV European Music Awards 2002 MTV European Music Awards 2002 at Palau Sant Jordi in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)
Eminem during 2003 MTV Video Music Awards - Backstage and Audience at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)
Madonna and Eminem during 2003 MTV Video Music Awards - Show at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, New York, United States. ***Exclusive*** (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
Eminem during the 11th annual MTV Europe Awards 2004 at the Tor di Valle in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Anthony Harvey - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
Eminem and 50 Cent at the MTV Studios - Times Square in New York City, New York (Photo by James Devaney/WireImage)
NEW ORLEANS - OCTOBER 30: Eminem performs at the 2009 Voodoo Experience at City Park on October 30, 2009 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Barry Brecheisen/WireImage)
Eminem performs as part of the 2010 Epicenter Music Festival at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Tim Mosenfelder/Corbis via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 05: Eminem speaks onstage at WSJ. Magazine 2014 Innovator Awards at Museum of Modern Art on November 5, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)
AUSTIN, TX – OCTOBER 11: Eminem performs in concert during the Austin City Limits Music Festival at Zilker Park on October 11, 2014 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Gary Miller/FilmMagic)
FILE - In this July 20, 2015, file photo, Rapper Eminem attends the premiere of "Southpaw" in New York. In a tweet Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017, Eminem said is hosting a promotional event Friday in Detroit in the style of a pop-up restaurant with a menu featuring "mom's spaghetti." The event is to promote his new album, "Revival." (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)
Eminem performs at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival on Saturday, June 9, 2018, in Manchester, Tenn. (Photo by Amy Harris/Invision/AP)
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The cover art features blood spatter and a bearded Eminem clad in a suit and fedora and holding a shovel. An alternate cover features the same splatter, with a now hatless Eminem holding both a hatchet and a gun to his head in an homage to Alfred Hitchcock's 1958 album of the same name: “Inspired by the master, Uncle Alfred!” Eminem tweeted.

“Music to Be Murdered By” is Eminem's 11th studio album, according to his website.

Among many collaborators, the album features Ed Sheeran, Skylar Grey, Anderson .Paak and Juice WRLD, the 21-year-old rapper who died in December.

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