Run the Jewels - Run the Jewels 2
Critic Score
Based on 33 reviews
2014 Ratings: #6 / 1042
Year End Rank: #4
User Score
2014 Rank: #10All Time: #412
Liked by 706 people
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CRITIC REVIEWS

100
Slant Magazine

RTJ2 is a steamroller of an album, packed with enough assonance and alliteration to school an AP English literature class.

100
NOW Magazine

Both emcees are incredibly versatile, switching up speed, style and tone, playing off each other one minute, one-upping each other the next.

100
AllMusic

If the first album was the supernova, RTJ2 is the RTJ universe forming, proving that Mike and El-P's one-off can be a going, and ever growing, concern.

91
A.V. Club

Run The Jewels 2 is concussive. The sequel takes the simplistic thrills of the debut and expands the duo’s natural chemistry. With Killer Mike grounded at the album’s emotional core, El-P is free to indulge in his intrepid production tendencies. 

91
Consequence of Sound

An album like RTJ2 is rare. Decades from now, this album may just be revered as one of the best hip-hop records of our era, the total synchronicity of two talented artists reaching the apex of their prime.

90
Pitchfork

Sounding like nothing else and answering to nobody but its creators, Run the Jewels 2 is in a class by itself.

90
Complex

Run the Jewels 2 is better than Run the Jewels 1 and is on par with R.A.P. Music, which is a tough task.

90
Exclaim!

It's been a minute, but RTJ have reminded us that, yes, rap music can be fun and opinionated simultaneously. In fact, that's when the genre is at its best.

90
The Line of Best Fit

This is the best relationship in rap music right now; more than producer/rapper, Render and Meline truly are brothers in arms and they’re here to give us all the push we need to take on the world.

90
Spectrum Culture

From the moment Mike ushers in the album with a boisterous “I’m finna bang this bitch out!” yelled from what sounds like a tunnel, RTJ2 announces two independent artists at their respective peaks fully fused as one of the best duos of their time.

90
HipHopDX

The egotistic pairing of KIller Mike and El-P are welcoming the challenge, undergoing the seemingly impossible task of raising their blitzkrieg social onslaught to new heights.

90
Under the Radar

Whether it's rage or just two guys trying to make each other laugh with dark humor, RTJ2 stands tall in a year of weak hip-hop.

90
Paste

You can feel the effort with every syllable, that this music is coming from their very core.

90
NME

Cranking the urgency and confrontation of last year's self-titled debut to neck-breaking levels of intensity, 'RTJ2' is an urgent, paranoid album for a violent, panicked time.

90
PopMatters

RTJ2 is filled with such thoughtful, penetrating moments, tightly wound up in 11 bona fide bangers. It’s a rare collaborative effort that works just as well for newcomers to either contributor as for longtime fans tracking their artistic progress.

90
musicOMH

More aggressive than its predecessor, RTJ2 keeps the party going and explores new arenas in both lyric and sound.

83
Pretty Much Amazing

Both rappers are clearly in their comfort zones, elevating and challenging one another where the occasion requires. The aesthetics and delivery of RTJ2 are very similar to Run the Jewels; the biggest differences can be found in the lyrics. 

80
The Sydney Morning Herald
With sounds that rear up out of murky soundscapes with the force of an explosion and lyrics that bristle with taut imagery, sardonic social critique and sometimes bitter self-examination.
80
FLOOD Magazine

RTJ2 showcases two virtuosic provocateurs pulling absolutely no punches. Lots of industrial-grade fun can be experienced while listening to this record with all of your car’s windows rolled down.

80
The Needle Drop
El-P and Killer Mike team up for an even more ambitious Run the Jewels record!
80
Q Magazine
On every possible level, this album is a total blast.
80
Mojo
This quick-fire sequel brutally updates the sabre-sharp formula.
80
The Irish Times

As statements of intents go, Run the Jewels 2 is a state of the nation address you should not ignore.

80
The Guardian

Their style is also a fusion – of El-P’s abrasive, experimental New York styling with Mike’s smooth, almost laconic, Atlanta flow.

80
Clash

Run The Jewels has again pushed rap away from regular rhythms and rhymes and into territories that they’re still calculating the dimensions of.

80
FasterLouder

Run the Jewels 2 takes the collaboration to the next level, establishing the duo as a unit – and one that’s not to be messed with.

80
Rolling Stone

On their second album as Run the Jewels, noise-loving Brooklyn rapper-producer El-P and Atlanta's Killer Mike make the most explosive hip-hop you'll hear all year.

80
XXL

If their first album acted as the duo’s thesis statement, the two MCs laying out the blueprint to what they wanted to accomplish, then this second is a laser-focused execution of that idea, of never letting up and never sugar-coating their sound to fit into any particular lane.

80
DIY

Lording up on a gross lack of restraint, it’s a killer blow that keeps on killing, a reminder of just how mad music can be without drowning in self-indulgence.

80
FACT Magazine

Run The Jewels 2 is the sound of two 39-year-old men having the best mid-life crisis ever, making near-the-knuckle rap bangers right on the boundary line between the underground and the mainstream.

80
Drowned in Sound

You can probably ascribe their success to two things; one, that they have the intelligence to constantly play to their strengths - RTJ2 is replete with razor-sharp lyricism and clattering, abrasive production - and two, that they don’t hide behind anything.

76
Sputnikmusic

Outside of “Love Again,” the album is chock-full of jams from front to back, and RTJ2, in its astonishing scope and finesse, continues a tradition of greatness for the unlikely duo, and serves as one of the more distinguished bright spots in an otherwise stale year for hip-hop.

50
Tiny Mix Tapes

For all the ways that it rightly articulates social justice concerns, RTJ2 refuses to utilize any rhetoric but that of masculinist invective, and the world has enough angry men in it already

ImpalaLT
98

Oh my!

Run The Jewels are one of my favorite groups I’ve ever heard in music, and that’s because of how energetic, memorable, and charismatic their music. Killer Mike and El-P have amazing flows that they trade in every song, and with El-P’s master-class production, the duo is a match made in heaven for sure.

This sophomore album was released for free on their website four days before the actual release date. To promote the album, three singles were released. Blockbuster ... read more

smallpeeble
100

yes of course

UltimateLifeFrm
85

"RUN THEM JEWELS FAST"! Man, I held back on this sequel for way too long.

It's been 5 and a half months since I heard heard RTJ 1 and while I still agree that it was a banger, it left me wanting me given its short runtime and given the crazy level of chemistry that El-P & Killer Mike have together, they're perfectly capable of delivering nonstop bangers.

Thankfully RTJ 2 is everything I hoped for with double the energy & attitude, going twice as hard. From start to finish, ... read more

HattieJosh
71

Brief review:

A bit of a mixed bag. Some parts are good some parts are questionable. I think if they focused more on making the beats work with their flows it could be a better album. Also, why is Travis Barker here? He can't even drum lol

ChristianG
91

Banger, after Banger, after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger,after Banger....

luchs
71

I DON'T GET IT BTW

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Added on: August 21, 2014