Though I’ve seen my fair share of bass rattling concerts at Denver’s legendary Ogden Theater, Run the Jewels was the very first time I truly felt my head throb – the bass this duo brought to the venue was overwhelming in all the right ways. This past Tuesday saw Denver’s legion of hip hop heads and overall adrenaline junkies coming out in full force to see RTJ, and I was more than grateful to take part. The openers of the night, Boots, Fashawn and Cuz Lightyear, all put on inspiring performances, but it was no secret that the crowd was anxiously awaiting Killer Mike and El-P to take the stage. Kicking off their hour long set with fan favorite ‘Run the Jewels’ from their first album, it proved to be the perfect track to fuel the rest of the night. The chemistry that bubbles between these two artists is beautiful to experience – their energy and enthusiasm washed over our crowd and we gave it to them right back.
Something I really admire about Run the Jewels are their genuinity; the two have so much to say, from their stances on our politically corrupt systems to the racial tensions in our streets, yet they let everything they have to say be felt through their live shows. This is not a preaching session, though some see the stage as a perfect soapbox, and Killer Mike and El-P are not here to shove their beliefs down your throat. They change lives through the intensity of their presences alone, and that’s what keeps the fans coming back for more. A peak of their set list was when the duo played ‘Close Your Eyes and Count To Fuck’, a riot-inducing track that refuses to be heard on a still floor. Other highlights included ‘Blockbuster Night Part One’, ‘Lie, Cheat, Steal’, ’All Due Respect’, and ’Christmas Fucking Miracle’ to end the night.
I know that I speak for others when I say that two nights of RTJ were simply not enough – give these dudes a week in any city and begin to watch your world change.