Often compared to Nas (Illmatic) due to the acclaim his debut received, Jay-Z, like Nas, has never managed to reach the same pinnacle of critical success. Some fans of Reasonable Doubt have labelled subsequent efforts "selling-out", as Jay-Z's mainstream fame has only increased, to the point where he has become one of the best-selling American musicians. Compared to later records, Reasonable Doubt contains much more ambivalence about the value of Jay-Z's often violent, seedy life. On tracks like "Two 22's", a sense of mourning, danger and insecurity permeate to a degree rarely seen on later recordings. Allmusic's Steve Huey wrote that it s this "depth that helps Reasonable Doubt rank as one of the finest albums of New York's hip-hop renaissance of the '90s"