Declaring themselves "the greatest rap group on earth," wicked rhyme-spitters, chain snatchers and underground hip-hop lifers El-P and Killer Mike, performing together as Run the Jewels destroyed a ballistic hour-long set at the Red Bull Sound Select showcase at Red 7 last night. Let the raw skill on display as they dropped track after track of furious aggro rap to an insanely hype sold out audience serve as a warning to lesser emcees in the game — vocal backing tracks are for suckas.
With number two, also slated as a free download, ready to drop on Oct. 27, expect the group’s buzz to only rise before they hit the stage at Fun Fun Fun Fest next month.
Apart from the brutally delivered, revolutionary real talk, the most striking thing about the set was the easy camaraderie between the two rappers, both of whom are pushing 40, and the warm, genuine interactions with the crowd. Here are a few choice quotes from last night’s set.
Killer Mike on bringing the heat: We two songs in and we sweating like spin class.
Killer Mike schooling a smoker in the front row (he stomped out his cigarette during the set): You can have your cigarette back. You just can’t smoke when a fat guy is rapping and doing cardio.
El-P on "Meow the Jewels 2," the feline remix project of the new album that exceeded its funding goal on Kickstarter yesterday.: We really (expletive) ourselves with that one. That might be the strongest argument against smoking week.
Killer Mike on hair. After El-P did "that thing where I throw a bottle of water on you because it feels good" and unintentionally sprayed a lovely sista in the front row: Nobody cares more about their hair than black women and hipster white men.
El-P on Killer Mike’s dancing. He’s a graceful elephant of a man.
Killer Mike on Fun Fun Fun Fest: We’re gonna tear that (expletive) down.