NPR’s Tiny Desk Concerts traditionally welcomes musicians who fall under the Americana/folk banner, but the beloved series has been branching out as of late. Recent installments have featured Common (performing from the White House), BadBadNotGood, D.R.A.M., and Run the Jewels, who star in today’s episode. “We heard Guwop did it, and we had to do it!” Killer Mike joked at one point during the duo’s literally compact set.
Run the Jewels supported their latest self-titled release with a trio of songs: “Talk to Me”, “Legend Has It”, and “A Report to the Shareholders”. Killer Mike and El-P clearly enjoyed the close quarters of the performance, working the office crowd even though they weren’t entirely sure what to do without mics in their hands. During “Legend Has It”, Killer Mike tripped himself up after improvising the second verse, but ultimately saved face by reciting the lyrics a capella.
Following the performance, Killer Mike delivered a few remarks to the NPR audience. “At some point in the future, they’re going to try to label us a political rap group, and that we are not,” he said. “We don’t care what party you belong to. We don’t care who you supported. We don’t care what you’re doing tomorrow politically. We care that socially every one of you know you’re absolutely born free and nothing has the right to interrupt that freedom.”
Watch the video above.