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Album Review: Run The Jewels: Run The Jewels 2

3 min read

Run The Jewels highly anticipated sophomore album Run The Jewels 2 is being described as one of the best hip hop albums of 2014 and after listening to the ground breaking new record its not hard to see why. The duo consisting of Atlanta based rapper Killer Mike and New York based rapper/producer El-P formed back in 2013 where they released their critically acclaimed self titled debut record Run The Jewels (which was available as a free download). The duo’s unique and dynamic sound sent the hip hop world into a frenzy, their combination of hard lyrics and heavy beats was something different, something hip hop fans had never heard before but were instantly asking for more and it didn’t take long for Killer Mike & El-P to answer their calls which brings us to Run The Jewels 2.

Run The Jewels 2 - Run The Jewels2014 hasn’t been the best year for hip hop, we have seen some horrendous releases that have actually received world wide success which is upsetting to say the least however; there have been a handful of records that have kept hip hop’s life support on and Run The Jewels 2 is one that can be added to that list. Just like their debut record, Run The Jewels 2 features a mix of blaring production and booming vocals that help create one hell of a powerful album.

El-P’s heavy hitting production kicks into full gear with Oh My Darling Don’t Cry, the track features a phat grungy beat that sees both Killer Mike and El-P going back and forth spitting straight fire on what is the second single from the album. The sound is so raw and so epic that you find yourself scrunching your face as you listen to it because what you’re hearing is so damn good (be prepared for your face to stay like that throughout the whole album). The loud aggression continues with Blockbuster Night Pt 1 or as Killer Mike puts it ‘Murder, mayhem, melodic music’. Both Mike and El-P once again show their lyrical skills here and completely murder the simple banging instrumental.

Whilst its virtually impossible to pick a highlight from the album because lets face it every track is phenomenal, there is one however; that just stands out above the rest and that is Close Your Eyes (And Count To Fuck). If you’re going to have a feature on your album this is the way to do it, Killer Mike and El-P join forces with Rage Against The Machine front man Zach De La Rocha to brings us one of the craziest tracks of the year. Mike & El-P give a stellar performance on this one however; La Rocha is the main man here stealing the show with his gritty, hard hitting flow (this man needs to release a solo album!).

Majority of the Run The Jewels 2 is loud and explosive however; tracks like Early and Crown prove that the duo are not just hard lyrics and heavy beats. Early showcases both rappers intelligent story telling ability, the track focuses on the issue of police corruption and brutality, a strong record that raises awareness of an important topic that needs to be addressed at the moment. Crown is definitely the most diverse track on the album, Mike & El-P take a break from the blaring sound and create a more chilled out atmosphere which puts the focus on their incredible wordplay.

Run The Jewels 2 is a breath of fresh air in a time where hip hop is being surrounded by commercial garbage, their presence is somewhat like a modern N.W.A, commercial success with a don’t give a fuck attitude, this is exactly what the hip hop world needs right now! Killer Mike and El-P take a bow and bring on Run The Jewels 3!