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'Here's something raw to listen to': Run the Jewels drops new album early

Mikael Wood, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Entertainment News

Talk about reading the room.

Run the Jewels -- the politically minded hip-hop duo featuring rappers Killer Mike and El-P -- took to social media Wednesday morning to announce that it was releasing its latest album ahead of schedule.

"F -- it, why wait," the group wrote in a statement posted on Twitter and Instagram. "The world is infested with bulls -- so here's something raw to listen to while you deal with it all."

Originally scheduled to come out Thursday night, "RTJ4" -- the duo's fourth self-titled LP since debuting in 2013 -- is available on streaming services and to download for free from Run the Jewels' website.

It features guest appearances by 2 Chainz, Pharrell Williams, Mavis Staples, Queens of the Stone Age's Joshua Homme and Zack de la Rocha of Rage Against the Machine, with whom Run the Jewels was set to tour this year before the COVID-19 pandemic delayed the rap-rock outfit's reunion to 2021.

Killer Mike has been a visible presence as protests have swept the country in the wake of George Floyd's death last week while in police custody in Minneapolis.

 

Speaking at a news conference in Atlanta alongside that city's mayor, Keisha Lance Bottoms, the rapper said, "I'm mad as hell. I woke up wanting to see the world burn yesterday, because I'm tired of seeing black men die." Yet he also urged demonstrators "not to burn your own house down for anger with an enemy."

On Twitter as he announced the new album's release, El-P described "RTJ4" as "our hearts, humor,anger+love of hip hop music" and said, "we hope it moves you, makes you smile, makes you dance, makes you think, and makes you nod your head."

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