Mentally ill from Amityville

How is Detroit pictured by its own inhabitants ? « Amityville » is a nickname that is recurrent in the D12 album. Those are nicknames that I found for Detroit on a Detroit rap forum (detroitrap.com):

1. The « D »
2. Cutthroat City
3. Hell (Thanks to 8 Mile)
4. D-Town (Gay)
5. Alligator City
6. Gator Capitol
7. Dirty District
8. Murda City

Detroit, that had been rated as the most dangerous American city from 1999 to 2001, has regained its title in 2003, according to a St Louis newspaper, followed by St Louis at the second place. There must be some truth in this ranking. The Detroit underground appears to be a dark place where murder is law. The « Amityville » song refers to the city as the murder capital. The « Amityville » song has scary and insane beats. The whole atmosphere of the song makes your feel the tough reality of Detroit. It’s like a total immersion in thugs’ reality :

« That’s why the city is filled with a bunch of fuckin idiots still (still)
That’s why the first motherfucker poppin some shit he gets killed (killed)
That’s why we don’t call it Detroit, we call it Amityville (‘Ville)
You can get capped after just havin a cavity filled (filled)
Ahahahaha, that’s why we’re crowned the murder capital still (still)
This ain’t Detroit, this is motherfuckin Hamburger Hill! (Hill!)
We don’t do drivebys, we park in front of houses and shoot
and when the police come we fuckin shoot it out with them too!
That’s the mentality here (here) that’s the reality here (here)
Did I just hear somebody say they wanna challenge me here?? (huh?)
While I’m holdin a pistol with this many calibres here?? (here??)
Got some registration and just made this shit valid this year? (year?)
Cause once I snap I can’t be held accountable for my acts
and that’s when accidents happen,
when a thousand bullets come at your house
and collapse the foundation around and they found you
and your family in it (AHHHHH!)
GOT DAMNIT HE MEANT IT WHEN HE TELLS YOU »

The refrain of the song makes you feel how much you are in danger in the Capital of murder :

« Mentally illll from Amityvilllle (ILLLL)
Accidentally killll your family stillll
Thinkin he won’t? God-damnit he willll (HE’SSSS)
Mentally illll from Amityvilllle »

Like the D 12 member Bizarre expresses it so well, « Amityville » also known as Detroit, is a scary place :

« Just like Outkast brought you into the mind of A-T-L, we want to bring you into the mind of Amityville (their name for Detroit) – a city where the sun never shines, full of potholes, snow and con artists ready to jack everything you got. »

Proof adds to that statement :

“Detroit ain’t into cleverness. Both of the coasts are artsy. Detroit ain’t a real creative place. It’s a plant-worker place. D-12 are here to bring you the sick, the obscene, the disgusting. “We not gonna bring you the normal thug-and-Cristal shit, we wanna be blamed for bringin’ shit to the table that people scared to talk about.”

Bugz’s (the former D12 member) death is a dramatic event that belongs to this kind of dark reality. It increased the member’s will to “make it”.

“That incident brought everything to reality,and let us know that life ain’t no game and we gotta make the best of what we got while we got it”, Kuniva says.

“Amityville” may not be a very creative place, but it seems to give birth to the most creative MCs. Detroit has always been Eminem’s biggest source of inspiration and it is the same for the other D12 members. It seems like the roughness and uglyness of the Detroit underground is rather an advantage to artistic creation. We all know that the most beautiful and also the most resistant flowers grow in an arid landscape. What also makes Detroit interesting in an artistic light is the mixture of different styles and genres. Despite the problems both communities may have experienced, black and white culture have influenced each other musically. People from different races have worked together to Rock City’s greatest benefit. To quote Dirtbombs singer Mick Collins:
“Detroit’s always been this meeting ground between black and white culture. Ghetto or white trash, it doesn’t matter – both come together musically, even in garage-rock.”