Run The Jewels - 'RTJ3'

8/10

When Run The Jewels released their second album 'Run The Jewels 2' back in 2014, they were greeted as a great return to the quality era of US hip-hop. With over forty years experience between them already, the united front of veteran MCs El-P and Killer Mike had become the new benchmark for the world's underground rap scene. Now after months of hype and teased material, the pair have surprisingly released their third album almost a month before its due date, giving us a Christmas never to forget.

What is most noticeable about the sound of 'RTJ3' when compared to its predecessors, is its evolution of its aesthetic. Rather than simply try and mimic their previous works, the pair have gone back to the drawing board throughout this new record and returned with something as equally fresh and unique as any of their other albums. With guest appearances from the likes of Danny Brown, Trina and BOOTS aiding the record's variety, this return has managed to cap off the end of 2016 in the most glorious fashion.

Professional, powerful and engaging throughout, 'RTJ3' would have easily made it into any Albums Of The Year list from last year if it wasn't unexpectedly dropped on Christmas Eve, but given the physical release is yet to come out, we are still counting this as a 2017 album. One that will certainly kick this year off to a flying start.

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