Survival (Eminem song)

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Single by Eminem
from the album The Marshall Mathers LP 2
Released October 8, 2013
Format Digital download
Recorded 2013
Length 4:34
Writer(s) Marshall Mathers, Liz Rodrigues, Khalil Abdul-Rahman, Mike Strange, Pranam Injeti, Erik Alcock[2]
Producer(s) DJ Khalil
Eminem singles chronology
"Rap God"
Music video
"Survival" on YouTube

"Survival" is a song by American rapper Eminem. The song was initially released as a pre-order bonus when pre-ordering the video game Call of Duty: Ghosts.[3] The song features vocals on the chorus from Liz Rodrigues of The New Royales. The song premiered on August 14, 2013 to promote the multiplayer trailer for Call of Duty: Ghosts.[4][5][6][7] The song was released as the second single from The Marshall Mathers LP 2 on October 8, 2013. Upon its single release, the song debuted at number 17 on the US Billboard Hot 100, and upon the album's release, it climbed to a new peak of number 16.


In August 2013, following the release of Call of Duty: Ghosts multiplayer video, Eminem released a video explaining to his fans the new album would be released in the fall, and that a new music video was coming soon.[8] It was also confirmed that the song would be featured within the game.[8] This was the third time that an Eminem song was used to promote a Call of Duty game, with "'Till I Collapse" being used in the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 trailer, and "Won't Back Down" being used in the Call of Duty: Black Ops trailer, in zombies mode as a hidden song and the end credits.[8]

Live performances[edit]

Eminem performed the song on Saturday Night Live on November 2, 2013, along with "Berzerk", with Skylar Grey replacing Liz Rodrigues on backing vocals.[9]

Music video[edit]

The official music video for "Survival" was released on October 8, 2013.[10] The music video featured Eminem rapping in front of footage of Call of Duty: Ghosts featured on a projector, with additional shots featuring elements from the game such as dogs and soldiers in their in-game outfits. The final scene features Eminem revisiting the house featured on the cover of the first Marshall Mathers LP.

Critical reception[edit]

The song features rock guitars in a style that makes it similar to works from Eminem's Recovery, according to Luke Bainbridge of The Guardian.[11] Los Angeles Times pop music critic Randall Roberts says that the song matches the "voluminous, venom-filled and explosive" levels of the work it accompanies.[12] Roberts says the song features an aggressive rapper, "cuss-filled lines...the bombast of distorted electric guitar and a jumbo beat."[12] He says that the DJ Khalil-produced song, which features the New Royales' Liz Rodrigues, "is a cliché-ridden couplet that sounds like it took as much time to imagine as it did to scribble on a scrap of paper."[12] Rolling Stone‍‍ '​‍s Ryan Reed describes the song as hard-hitting with background music that classifies as "breakneck, arena-rock guitars and trashy drums."[4]

Chart performance[edit]

Release history[edit]

Country Date Format Label
United States October 8, 2013[35] Digital download Shady, Aftermath, Interscope


  1. ^ "Eminem's Questionably Lip-Synced 'SNL' Set Hauls Out Rick Rubin, Skylar Grey | SPIN | Newswire | TV". SPIN. 2013-11-03. Retrieved 2014-02-18. 
  2. ^ Steffen Hung. "Eminem - Survival". Retrieved 2013-10-24. 
  3. ^ "Eminem’s new album discounted when pre-ordering Ghosts". 
  4. ^ a b Reed, Ryan (2013-08-14). "Eminem Unveils Hard-Hitting New Song, 'Survival': Rapper's eighth album is expected to be released later this year". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2013-08-28. 
  5. ^ Rivera, Zayda (2013-08-14). "Eminem drops new single ‘Survival’ on trailer for ‘Call of Duty: Ghosts’". New York Daily News. Retrieved 2013-08-28. 
  6. ^ Boardman, Madeline (2013-08-14). "Eminem's 'Survival' Debuted In 'Call of Duty: Ghosts' Commercial (UPDATED)". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 2013-08-28. 
  7. ^ Brandle, Lars (2013-08-26). "Eminem Goes 'Berzerk' For New Single: Listen". Billboard. Retrieved 2013-08-29. 
  8. ^ a b c "Eminem Premieres New Song ‘Survival’ in ‘Call of Duty’ Trailer". 2013-08-14. Retrieved 2013-10-09. 
  9. ^ Kevin Rutherford (November 3, 2013). "Eminem Gets Assist From Rick Rubin, Skylar Grey on 'SNL': Watch". Billboard. Retrieved January 7, 2015. 
  10. ^ Alexis, Nadeska (2013-10-08). "Eminem's Detroit Childhood Haunts His 'Survival' Video - Music, Celebrity, Artist News". Retrieved 2013-10-09. 
  11. ^ Bainbridge, Luke (2013-08-24). "Eminem – review: Bellahouston Park, Glasgow: The 40-year-old rapper's career-spanning set is short on new material but his stage presence is as potent as ever". The Guardian. Retrieved 2013-08-29. 
  12. ^ a b c Roberts, Randall (2013-08-14). "First impression: Eminem's new 'Survival,' from Call of Duty". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2013-08-29. 
  13. ^ " – Eminem – Survival". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
  14. ^ " – Eminem – Survival" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  15. ^ " – Eminem – Survival" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
  16. ^ " – Eminem – Survival" (in French). Ultratop 50.
  17. ^ "Ultratop Belgian Charts". 2013-10-19. Retrieved 2013-10-24. 
  18. ^ "Eminem Album & Song Chart History" Canadian Hot 100 for Eminem.
  19. ^ " – Eminem – Survival". Tracklisten. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
  20. ^ " – Eminem – Survival" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
  21. ^ " – Eminem – Survival". GfK Entertainment.
  22. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Single (track) Top 40 lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége.
  23. ^ "Chart Track: Week 42, 2013". Irish Singles Chart.
  24. ^ "FIMI – Classifiche – Top Digital – Classifica settimanale WK 44 del 2013". Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana (in Italian). Retrieved April 28, 2015.
  25. ^ " – Eminem – Survival" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  26. ^ " – Eminem – Survival". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
  27. ^ "Archive Chart: 2013-11-02". Scottish Singles Top 40.
  28. ^ " – Eminem – Survival". Singles Top 60.
  29. ^ " – Eminem – Survival". Swiss Singles Chart.
  30. ^ "Archive Chart: 2013-11-02" UK Singles Chart.
  31. ^ "Archive Chart: 2013-11-02" UK R&B Chart.
  32. ^ "Eminem Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot 100 for Eminem.
  33. ^ "Eminem Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for Eminem.
  34. ^ "2013 Year End Charts — R&B/Hip-Hop Songs". Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved December 13, 2013. 
  35. ^ "iTunes - Music - Survival - Single by Eminem". 2013-10-08. Retrieved 2013-10-09.