It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back is the second studio album by American hip hop group Public Enemy, released April 14, 1988, on Def Jam Recordings. Recording sessions for the album took place at Chung King Studios, Greene Street Recording, and Sabella Studios in New York City. Noting the enthusiastic response over their live shows, the group intended with Nation of Millions to make the music of a faster tempo than the previous album for performance purposes.
The album peaked at number 42 on the Billboard 200 chart. By August 1989, it was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America, after shipments of one million copies in the United States. The album was very well received by writers and music critics, and appeared on many publications' "best album" lists for 1988.
It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back has since been regarded by music writers and publications as one of the greatest and most influential albums of all-time. The work has been hailed for its production techniques as well as the socially and politically charged lyricism of lead MC Chuck D. In 2003, the album was ranked number 48 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500