Kendrick Lamar is gearing up to release the sequel to his debut good kid, m.A.A.d city, as you well know. With the release of the untitled album’s first single (or rather "statement") “i” this Tuesday putting everyone in a frenzy, it’s only a matter of time until we get the full product. While Kendrick is a lyrical and creative genius who looks to be a mainstay in hip-hop for years to come, the bar has been set high for his second album. We won’t abandon him if he doesn’t live up to those expectations. After all, Jay Z’s In My Lifetime, Vol. 1 was met with mixed reviews—and he turned out all right.

Some artists come out the gate on fire and face the pressure of delivering a sophomore album that reaches the same heights. Others have something to prove when their debut doesn’t leave a lasting impression. Before everyone has the opportunity to critique and dissect Kendrick’s upcoming album, let’s look at sophomore efforts from some of hip-hop’s biggest artists and see how they stack up to their first releases.